Kazi Nabil Ahmed, the chairman of the national football team committee, informed about the latest development after a video conference with national booters, coaches, manager and deputy chairman Tabith Awal Thursday
Bangladesh Football Federation is planning to start the national men’s team’s isolation training camp as soon as the Covid-19 situation gets normal after the Eid in a bid to keep the players fit and ready before the 2022 World Cup and 2023 Asian Cup joint qualifiers resume.
Kazi Nabil Ahmed, the chairman of the national football team committee, informed about the latest development after a video conference with national booters, coaches, manager and deputy chairman Tabith Awal Thursday.
“Isolation training camp of the national team can be held when the pandemic situation gets normal in the country. When government holidays end, offices open and when it is safe to gather people – such orders are needed before starting the camp,” said Nabil, adding that they would inform the Ministry for Youth and Sports before the camp.
When asked about the probable date and location of the training camp, he replied, “It could start in one or two months at an appropriate single venue in Dhaka or a nearby place ensuring practice and accommodation facilities and following all health and safety measurements.”
Jamie Day’s first two-year contract as national team head coach ended on May 14.
The Englishman’s renewed contract with two-year extension is set to be effective from mid-August.
Besides, there is the existing travel ban that restricted arrival and departure worldwide.
The local coaches will initiate the training camp if Day can’t make it in time.
“We can’t bring Jamie whenever we want because of travel restrictions caused by Covid-19. But isolation camp can start with the local coaches if he can’t come,” said Nabil, also the BFF vice-president.
There has been no competitive games in a little over two months due to the pandemic and the players have been stuck at home without proper training since then.
The frustration grew after Bangladesh Premier League 2019-20 got abandoned, leading to no domestic fixture in the next four months at least.
When asked if he had any message for the players during the conference, Nabil said it is the physical and mental health the footballers are advised to focus on to stay fit during this difficult time.
‘Stay as safe and fit as possible’
Day joined the conference from the United Kingdom along with BFF technical director Stuart Watkiss.
He said afterwards, “It was to check the players’ mental and physical welfare and possible plans going forward.
“For now just keep the players safe and as fit as possible. Then when it's safe we can look at getting them fit again. In the meantime, we all staffs and myself are always here for them if they need anything.”
Skipper Jamal Bhuiyan said from Denmark, “It's very important for all the players to be fit, and stay fit. I know all are doing regular running and gym but nothing matches normal football practice. I am personally looking forward to see all you people again.”
The training opportunities vary from player to player as striker Nabib Newaj Jibon said, “We can do regular practice to maintain our fitness. I am trying to follow coach's instructions but cannot do all of those at home.”
Bangabandhu Gold Cup 2020 was the last tournament Bangladesh participated in and the game against Burundi on January 23 was the last match.
The men in red and green were scheduled to play Afghanistan and Qatar in late March and host India and Oman in June but all four joint qualifying fixtures have been postponed indefinitely due to Covid-19.