Canberra United's new beginning comes with an old twist, which is fitting because Heather Reid has always seen herself as an agent of change.
The change she hopes to see this time comes from being a fan rather than an administrator. But when Njegosh Popovich unleashes a revamped team on Saturday, Reid hopes to see some of the foundations laid more than a decade ago.
Reid will be a surprise home-game guest when United starts its A-League Women's campaign against Perth Glory at McKellar Park after being inducted to the University of Canberra walk of Fame on Friday.
The trip from the Sunshine Coast back to Canberra gave her a chance to reflect on the brutal rollercoaster she's been riding for more than 40 years.
Being a female administrator trying to buck the status quo takes its toll, she says it's all been worth it for the results she sees today.
Right at the top of the list is her role in helping force FIFA to create a women's World Cup, and then 30 years later lobbying FIFA to make Australia the host for the 2023 tournament.
But right alongside it is her Canberra United baby. The one she fought so hard for more than a decade ago when Football Australia was planning to launch what was known then as the W-League.
"Canberra United is very dear to my heart," Reid said.
"When I think about the Canberra United journey, we had to convince Football Australia that the city could sustain a women's team. A standalone team, and that Capital Football was committed.
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"It's gone from strength to strength, with a dedicated core group of people ... I've always been an advocate for systemic and cultural change, and that's the only way we get a better outcome for women.
"Whether that's equal pay, appropriate facilities or just toilets ... it has to start somewhere. So I'll be there at Canberra United cheering and waving my cap because I'll always support them."
Reid was one of 22 inductees to the walk of fame, recognising her journey from University of Canberra student all the way through to Football Australia board member before retiring in recent years.
She was the Capital Football chief executive for 12 years, overseeing Canberra United's arrival on the W-League stage as the only team not aligned to an A-League men's club.
"I pinch myself now because I never imagined that we would have a women's World Cup, let alone having one in Australia. It's spine tingling," Reid said.
"Soccer was a fledgling sport in the 1980s and it had unfortunately reputations - whether it was kick and giggle or a cohort of women who were regarded as butch lesbians.
"The discrimination and cultural issues needed to be addressed, but you now you look at the diversity of the game, we don't have those issues. It's the world game and it's great."
There will be a hint of familiarity when Reid takes her seat in the stand. Foundation Canberra United captain Ellie Brush is back in the squad and Michelle Heyman will captain the side.
But there's also a massive unknown element for Popovich's first game as coach, after being appointed to replace Vicki Linton.
The team won just one of the first 12 games last season and missed the finals. They haven't made the play-offs since the 2016-17 campaign, which was coincidentally Brush's last season before moving to Sydney.
Brush is still recovering from knee surgery and will miss the first month, but Popovich has thrown together a new group of players to chase a third ALW title.
"Everyone is very confident," said new right back Ellen Gett. "We're excited and a bit nervous, which is good. The pressure is always there to win, you want three points in every round.
"We have a lot of leaders who have been here for a while and they're setting the standards. I'm new, but the leaders have expressed how important it is to play for Canberra."
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