Leah Williamson talks investments, back-up plans & more women in positions of power by Michelle
Arsenal Women defender and captain of the Lionesses who won Euro 2022, Leah Williamson, suffered a season-ending ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) injury last month, ending her hopes of captaining the Lionesses in this summers FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia & New Zealand.
In a statement Leah said “Ultimately, I think it’s just my time (to suffer an injury).
“I haven’t had a day since last October when I’ve walked on to the pitch without a physical or mental question mark over me, and that’s professional sports.
“So now I have to listen to my body, give it what it needs, and if everything happens for a reason, then we’ll see what road this turn sends me down.”
Alongside her football career, Williamson has been training to become an accountant. As reported by the Independent, she revealed that initially, pursuing a different qualification served as an “insurance policy” for herself.
“I started it as a bit of an insurance policy for me to take the pressure off football, so if it didn’t work out I have something else.”
“Most women’s footballers my age will have a qualification of some description just because we have to, in case anything goes wrong”, she said.
Williamson has also made her debut in the business world by announcing her investment in Toca Football. This collaboration with Toca, a company that operates football-themed social entertainment venues and indoor soccer centers in North America under the name Toca Social, aims to foster women’s involvement in the sport, explained Williamson.
Williamson emphasized the importance of having a backup career, as she discussed how her venture into business, combined with her pursuit of an accounting qualification, demonstrated the importance of this, in an interview with PA news agency.
“For me, I enjoyed maths at school, so it seemed like a secure thing to tick off and that I always have in my locker.
“I don’t want to wish away my career but it is a short-lived time for all of us.”
In addition, Williamson highlighted the necessity for increased representation of women in management positions within the sport.
“Within football, there are so many rooms that need women in positions of power… and there are places that I would like to see women influence a lot more than we already do”, she told PA.
Leah expressed her aspirations to hold a decision-making position within a business in the future, drawing inspiration from retired players who successfully transition into their next roles with ease.
“It is a really fine balance. The nature of what we do requires absolute dedication, and the performance side of it consumes you.
“But it is so important, and the way I look at it, is that I would like to know before the end where I would like to head.”
We are unlikely to see Leah back on the pitch for Arsenal & England before the second-half of the 2023-24 season, but it doesn’t sound like she’ll be idling with accountancy exams and investments to run! Go Leah!
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