With a few senior caps under her belt, the France breakthrough forward has made a scintillating start to the campaign, writes Martin Whiteley.
Making the French women’s national team squad is no easy task. Becoming a part of it at just 19 years of age is even more remarkable, but that is exactly what Reims’ attacker Kessya Bussy managed to achieve.
Like many girls before her Bussy began her football career playing with the boys. As a 15-year-old, the Orleans-born forward joined her local sides junior girls’ team and the following year made her debut for the senior side.
The potential of Bussy was already being noticed nationally too. A call-up to the France Under-16 side was just the start of her gaining representative honours. While with the second division outfit the forward played at each age group up to Under-20 level, with the highlight for her being a member of the squad that won the 2019 Uefa Women’s Under-19 Championship in Scotland.
After three seasons with US Orleans, it was time for Bussy to experience life at the next level when she signed for top-flight side Reims ahead of the 2020-21 campaign. Although they slumped to a narrow 1-0 defeat by Fleury 91 in the Division 1 Feminine at the weekend,
coach Amandine Miquel has praised the qualities of her new acquisition. Being able to defend well from the front, with a clear thought process, as well as being capable of putting the ball in the net, were just some of the attributes the coach particularly liked.
Not a bad list of skills for a player who admits she had one main quality when she started out: the ability to run fast.
Bussy, now 20, produced a steady if unspectacular first season with Reims. Operating wide in a front three, the attacker found the net five times in the league as well as also helping her team-mates get on the scoresheet with a series of assists. After all their endeavours the club from the northeast part of the country gained a sixth-placed finish with 30 points.
The performances from Bussy were still impressive enough for her to be shortlisted for the National Union of Professional Football Players Division 1 Feminine Young Player of the Year award.
In the week before the final league fixtures last season, Bussy also received her first call-up to the senior France national team for their home friendly against Germany in June. In the closing stages, the forward made it onto the field to claim her first cap as the hosts won 1-0.
With the added confidence of now being a full international, Bussy has made a scintillating start domestically this campaign. The attacker has already equalled the numbers she recorded last season in just seven Division 1 Feminine appearances this term.
That impressive form has also seen the Reims wide player make two more national team appearances, the most recent coming in France’s 5-0 win in Kazakhstan last month.
Signing a proven international goalscorer is often outside the financial structure for a club like Reims. The ability to unearth a gem is what keeps them competitive. If that rough diamond can find the back of the net too then that is a bonus. In the shape of Bussy, Reims has certainly hit the jackpot on both counts this time around.
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