Transfer news: City retain four more Westfield W-League stars

Melbourne City have retained four more stars from their Westfield W-League Championship-winning team ahead of the 2017/18 Season.

Westfield Matildas goalkeeper Lydia Williams, New Zealand international Rebekah Stott, American defender Lauren Barnes and foundation striker Larissa Crummer are all back for City’s title defence.

The quartet commenced pre-season training at the City Football Academy earlier this week after concluding their playing duties in the US National Women’s Soccer League with Seattle Reign.

Crummer, 21, was instrumental in helping City claim an historic Premiership and Championship double in its maiden campaign, claiming the Westfield W-League Golden Boot with 11 goals and the inaugural W-League Young Player of the Year Award.

“Larissa’s return is like a new signing for us,” coach Patrick Kisnorbo said.

“She proved during her first season that she’s one of the most dangerous forwards in the league and we’re confident that she can reach those heights again this season.

“To have her fit and firing again is a massive boost for us ahead of our title defence.

“Lydia, Rebekah, and Lauren played a very important role in our success last season. It was vital for us to keep our core defensive unit together and we are delighted to have them back on board for our title defence.

“Their re-signing with us is testament to the consistent performances, standards and results we are aiming to achieve with this team.”

Larissa Crummer in action for Melbourne City.

Williams was a standout between the posts during her first season at the club, keeping five clean sheets from her 14 appearances.

Barnes was a figure of consistency in defence throughout her first campaign at City, making 12 appearances and starring in the Finals Series.

Kiwi defender Stott, 24, returns to City for a third consecutive season, making 27 appearances across two-title winning campaigns.

City begin their title defence in a Grand Final rematch against Perth Glory next Friday.