How will Premier League players keep fit during self-isolation, and when will football return? – The Sun

CONFUSION continues to reign as coronavirus wreaks havoc on the sporting calendar.

Callum Hudson-Odoi was the first Premier League player to be diagnosed, with bosses deciding shortly after to suspend activity in the top four divisions.

With a lockdown situation similar to Spain and Italy's a very real possibility, footballers would in that situation have to stay in peak physical condition without being able to leave the confides of their own home.

How will Premier League players keep fit during self-isolation?

DESPITE there being a date for a return pencilled in, the situation continues to move so fast that nobody is really sure when football will return again.

As such, players will have to stick to their usual physical and nutritional schedules so they're ready to go when it's time to get back to the day job.

Football is big business and clubs will be keen for their stars to keep in peak shape despite the cancellations.

Many players can take advantage of home gyms – or a swimming pool if you're Lionel Messi – while Liverpool have provided each player with individual programmes to help them hit the ground running when they return to Melwood.

A Reds statement read: "Players have been given individual programmes to follow during this period and first-team training took place as normal today.

"Following a meeting of Premier League club shareholders on Friday morning, it was unanimously decided to suspend the competition until next month, subject to medical advice and conditions at the time.

"Liverpool will work with the club’s medical team and other relevant authorities to monitor the situation and decide upon a date to return to Melwood to give the squad the best chance of preparing for their next fixture."

Of course, medical teams will also have to be on the lookout for players potentially falling ill.

Arsenal physio Gary Lewin has revealed how top-flight teams are keeping their players conditioned at home with the use of gym equipment – but recognises that with an ever-changing situation, it could prove a challenge.

Writing in the Daily Mail, he said: "If players are off for seven days, they will be given a personal training schedule.

"If they’re back at the training ground by the second week, it would be like a mini pre-season, with conditioning work to re-establish fitness levels.

"The third week, before April 4, would be more standard, with harder physical work at the start and tactical meetings at the back end. However, it’s hard to plan with certainty.

"Although players might be ready to play, government guidelines on mass gatherings may change next week, making a restart impossible.

"To keep them fit at home could be problematic. It will be easier for Premier League players as many have gyms or swimming pools.

"You could import treadmills, watt bikes or cross trainers and, water work could be done, although not in a public pool."

"The other logistical issue around resumption is players who then test positive. As it stands, the whole squad would self-isolate for a week, meaning more cancelled fixtures."

When will the Premier League return?

CURRENTLY, the situation is changing constantly and football chiefs are having to adapt.

When suspending the Premier League and EFL on Friday, March 13, they pencilled in a return date of Saturday, April 4.

One thing we can be certain is there will be NO football in the UK between now and that date.

But with government crackdowns on mass gatherings likely to increase, many experts believe we won't be seeing the beautiful game for a while yet.

⚠️ Read our Coronavirus in Sport live blog for the latest news, updates and cancellations

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