JFF closely monitoring Boyz’s fitness
National senior men’s football team manager Roy Simpson says that the onus is on the players to keep themselves motivated and in good physical conditioning during the inactive period for sports because of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Simpson said that the coaching staff was not particularly pleased with the amount of ground covered by the players in their 2-0 win over Bermuda in an international friendly at the Montego Bay Sports Complex on March 11.
“There is not much we can do,” he said. “Remember, each player would be under the jurisdiction of their respective clubs. Yes, we are in discussions with them, and we know that training by themselves is different and much harder than in groups for competition, however, they will have to try and maintain their fitness.
“First of all, the motivation has to be with them. They must understand what is at stake, what they need to do in terms of maintaining their fitness, and what the bigger picture is. If we should look at the game on March 11, we had everybody strapped up with GPS (global position system that monitors players’ heart rate and performance based on movement). So we had a report of how many kilometres they ran, how many times they sprinted, and what sort of impact they had on the game. We share that sort of information, so they have a platform in knowing where they are at present and what they need to do.”
Simpson says that because of social distancing as a prevention method for COVID-19, fitness coaches Jason Henry and Lamar Walker are unable to do physical monitoring of the players, especially the local-based ones who are known to traditionally be lacking a bit in the fitness department. However, they are still following their progress through other methods.
“To be fair to some of these players, I have seen on their WhatsApp statuses and IG (Instagram) where they are doing some fitness work,” he said. “The coronavirus has appeared at the back end of the football season, which means seasons are going to be extended, so their physical preparation and maintenance have to be extended. This is a must so that as soon as we get the green light, players coming in have to be able to hit the ground running.”