He spent most of 2019 recovering from surgery and in the ongoing year getting into a global Covid-19 strike with no game to play for an indefinite time
Topu Barman is experiencing two sad chapters of his playing career for consecutive years.
He spent most of 2019 recovering from surgery and in the ongoing year getting into a global Covid-19 strike with no game to play for an indefinite time.
The national centre-back has been quarantined with his family at Siddhirganj, Narayanganj for more than 15 days and going through some daily routine he often had the chance to follow.
Playing carom, watching movies and trying his expertise in virtual football are some of the leisure-time activities for the senior booters of Bangladesh side and at the same time he has working out at home every day to stay fit.
“A long break spending at home after long time,” said the Bashundhara Kings defender over the phone.
“I could give little time to family members when I used to visit them on vacation before because there were friends outside to meet as well. But now none of us can go out and lot of memories to share with each other.”
Topu talked about how his daily life took a turn since he left the club tent on March 20 as all kinds of sports are suspended indefinitely. Football is still there virtually.
“I play carom with my elder brother Dipu Barman at home. Lot of close-fights among us. We try to make some fun in this difficult time,”
“I’m also watching some Hollywood movies, mostly the fantasy ones, besides, got some times to try virtual game, mainly playing football on smartphone.”
Topu was out of any competitive action for nearly seven months due to Anterior Cruciate Ligament surgery on his left knee on April 23 but it was still a quick recovery before kicking off the new season fresh during the Federation Cup.
“Two different feelings then and now,” Topu compared, “It was sad not to play but only watch but I had my challenge to recover from injury faster. Now I’m fit and very much eager to play but there is no way to do that.”
“I miss football a lot. It’s really difficult time for a professional footballer for having no game to play without knowing for how long.”
The top centre-back of the country, like his teammates, is restrained about the fitness which is a bit difficult to maintain in the times of corona.
“The physical trainer [Javier Sanches] of the club gives us training schedule every day on whatsapp group while national team coach Jamie Day and Stuart [Watkiss] also give guidelines. Every player is maintaining fitness own way.”
“I usually practice in the afternoon for 40-50 minutes every day, like core training and free hand training at home, jogging outside with no people around and sometime go to nearby empty field.”
“This is how we are trying to hold the fitness level up, it’s not like something we practice in the club but it could be effective up to 70 percent. When things get normal, we need some pre-season time to meet the rest 30 percent.”
A year after playing a season in the first division league with Wari Club, Topu made his Bangladesh Premier League debut with Mohammedan (2010-14) before featuring for Sheikh Russel KC, Saif Sporting Club and two separate seasons at Abahani Limited. He has been a regular choice at the heart of Bangladesh defence making 30 international appearances with three goals by his name.