Bance: There's always a point to prove

Albion youngster recovering well from injury this summer and is eager to push on next season.

By Heather Miller • 09 July 2023

By Kyle Hemsley
Albion youngster wants to be challenged

It's nearly another three months before the Women's Super League season returns but as the attention now turns the to the much anticipated World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, midfielder Libby Bance is continuing to work hard and is hungry for a new season full of opportunities.

Since suffering a minor stress fracture injury in her foot at the end of last season the midfielder has been dedicated during the off season to ensure that she is fit and ready ahead of the start of pre-season training in August. 

"I had a stress fracture in my foot which normally happens from overload over a period of time," she said. "I was in the protective boot for four or five weeks and I've been slowly rehabbing and strengthening it. I've been doing running in the pool, which is really difficult by the way - so hard!

"It's not great to have any injury but having it at the tail-end of the season was probably the best time to get one. I've had this injury before so I knew the recovery process.

"It was frustrating, but I'm working hard to make sure that I'm fit and ready for the new season ahead."

By Paul Hazlewood
Bance ready for season under Mel

Following her appointment at the end of April, the summer will be a key time for head coach Melissa Phillips.

"There's going to be a lot of change this summer," added Bance. "Mel's key aim was to keep us in the league, so I don't think she necessarily implemented everything that she would have wanted to into the team within that time. I think she will definitely put her mark on Brighton and the team which is exciting."

This will be Libby's third season in the first-team having signed her first professional contract last year, and the Academy graduate outlined the learning opportunity for the younger players to gain from within an experienced squad. 

By Kyle Hemsley
Bance thrives off learning from teammates

"I feel you always have to prove a point as a player," she added. "Working hard is something that comes naturally especially as an athlete, no one just cruises through training. If we continue to bring in the calibre of player like Pauline [Bremer] then every other player seriously needs to keep proving a point.

"During my time at Brighton I've obviously learned a lot from my coaches but some of the biggest things that I've learned have been from my teammates - they've all taught me so much. 

"You don't necessarily have to speak to them but just watch them and take note of their actions, it almost becomes like a learnt behaviour.

"Us younger players haven't experienced everything so to learn from other players is really important. Some of them have experienced crazy things like Champions League finals, World Cups and European competitions - there's no one better to learn from."