England and Arsenal football star Leah Williamson is preparing to light up the pitch at the Women's World Cup this summer, and she couldn't be more thrilled. "It's always been my dream to play for England and I have the time of my life whenever I get to step onto the pitch wearing the England shirt," the 22-year-old, who this week is announced as an ambassador for Swarovski's latest dazzling campaign, proudly tells HELLO! in an exclusive chat.
Although, she admits, "there is more pressure playing at an international level. There are more eyes on you, everything is heightened. That's why I love the game."
Leah is an ambassador for Swarovski's #FollowTheLight campaign
Since joining the Arsenal Ladies Centre of Excellence at the tender age of nine, Leah, who also now plays midfield and centre back for the women's team, has overcome hurdles on her path to phenomenal success. "When I was at school, I wanted to be a footballer when I was older but that wasn't a thing," she says. "There are people who tell you you can't do it. But I chose to pursue my passion and luckily it paid off for me."
Leah's positive outlook and jewellery brand Swarovski's new #FOLLOWTHELIGHT initiative, which celebrates inspirational women being brighter together, are a match made in heaven. "Being a role model for girls who enjoy football, I'm able to give them confidence," explains Leah. "The main message I give to fans is: You can do whatever you want. Everybody should be able to shine as brightly as they can."
Of how women can support each other more, she adds: "I play sport and my job is to compete with other women but sometimes we forget that we're all in it together. Ultimately we're all still striving for the same thing. Even on the pitch, it's about being gracious in competition and understanding, if you can't succeed, why shouldn't someone else? There's constant competition within your team and against other teams, but when you look at the bigger picture, any success is success for the women's game. That's the same in life. A success for one woman is success for all women."
Leah is an ambassador for Swarovski's #FollowTheLight campaign. For more information, visit: www.swarovski.com
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