Barnsley defender Michael Sollbauer has revealed the club’s training strategy while they are on lockdown amid the Coronavirus outbreak.
Like the rest of English football, the Championship club currently find themselves in lockdown in an attempt to help curb the spread of the virus.
That has meant players up and down the divisions are currently being forced to train away from clubs, with most having to maintain their fitness at home.
Sollbauer, who has travelled to his native Austria during the lockdown, is one of those and says the club have created a specific plan they have to follow.
“The start of training was scheduled for early April. But now everything will probably be postponed,” he told Sky Sports Austria.
“Like everyone else, we can only watch and wait from day to day. Our fitness trainer has given us a schedule to keep us fit.
“This is a mixture of basic endurance, strengthening, mobilisation and stretching exercises. We are in exchange via an app. We have also been given a nutrition plan.
“In the first week it was still okay, now in the second week at home it’s already more difficult. Especially training alone is very unusual.
“But mentally, you can also grow in such a situation. And one thing you have to say: People whose job is in danger because of the current situation have it much harder.”
Sollbaeur was also keen to back his manager, Gerhard Struber, in his criticism of the authorities reaction to the virus.
The United Kingdom has shown something of a lax approach in their efforts to contain COVID-19s spread, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson only putting lockdown measures in place this week.
Similarly, the Premier League only elected to suspend football when Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta tested positive for the virus, and Sollbaeur believes had that not happened, nothing would have changed.
“My coach is right. Many people in England simply thought they were not affected.
“It was quite funny how life in England went on quite normally, while in Austria everything was closed down.
“Just before we flew home, the disinfectant suddenly ran out everywhere. If Mikel Arteta hadn’t gotten sick, we would probably still have played with Queens Park Rangers.”
The question on most footballer’s minds is whether football will return at any point this season.
At the moment the domestic leagues are set to return at the end of April, but it is looking increasingly likely that that deadline won’t work.
As a result, it has been questioned whether the leagues should be abandoned or the current standings should be the final results.
If that was the case, Barnsley would be relegated, but Sollbauer isn’t worried by that prospect, insisting he is happy at the club.
“I think it’s possible, (a suspension) but it’s certainly not the best solution,” he added.
“For us, it would perhaps be an advantage, but we want to maintain our class on the pitch. The biggest madness would be if Liverpool couldn’t win the Premier League with that advantage.
“I signed a contract until 2022, and it covers the third division. In the event of Barnsley getting relegated, there are clauses.
“But if we do, there’s no telling what the club would do. What’s certain is I’m very happy about the move to Barnsley.”