Another player who only came into national team contention during the last 12 months. Williams had represented Wales at youth level before making his Socceroo debut starting against Japan in the final 2010 FIFA World Cup™ qualifier. Born and raised in Perth, Williams is a sturdy defender who can play in the heart of the defence or on the right, and it is the latter position where he has featured for Australia.
Signing for Middlesbrough in 2007, the then teenager failed to make a start until a loan move with Burnley. Williams was a permanent fixture throughout his five-month stint at Trurf Moor helping the club win promotion to the Premier League and coming to the attention of the Australian coaching staff. He returned to Middlesbrough 12 months ago playing regularly, including in central midfield on occasions. His performances at the club, which also has Australia striker Scott McDonald on its books, led to a renewed contract that will take Williams through to 2013.
His versatility adds an extra layer of appeal for Australia boss Pim Verbeek if injuries strike the Australian squad during South Africa 2010. In his few appearances for the Socceroos, Williams has shown himself to be technically solid with a good footballing brain.