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Mario Vrancic: We are excited about returning to action

28 May 2020

Mario Vrancic admits there is "excitement" within the Norwich City first-team squad about the potential return of Premier League football.

The English top-flight season has been on hold for the past two months because of the coronavirus pandemic, forcing all players and staff to stay at home in an attempt to curb the spread of the virus.

However, Premier League sides including the Canaries were permitted to return to training last week in the first steps taken towards the return of professional football in England.

Speaking about what it was like to return to the Lotus Training Centre, Vrancic said: "I didn’t see all the lads when I first returned because we were only allowed to train in small groups. It was very strange because we aren’t allowed to use the dressing room or the canteen. 

"We use the academy facilities and there’s a one-way system through the indoor dome to the training pitches. Our temperature is checked when we arrive and we have coronavirus tests twice a week.  

"Then we go for a short activation session and then for a meeting by the pitch. We then start training and we go home straight away after training finishes.  

"Training is a lot different now. We were only allowed to train for limited periods at the start but now that’s changing with the new protocol in place. It’s much better now and there is a lot more interaction."

Prior to the return to team training, City's players kept on top of their fitness levels in their own homes.

"It was a tough training plan," said Vrancic. "We had lots of Zoom sessions for yoga and pilates and we did lots of running. It’s a bit annoying to train on your own for eight weeks but we couldn’t complain too much.  

"The Zoom sessions were good because we did them altogether, so it was nice to train with the guys for a little bit."

Now that the resumption of football seemingly edging closer, Vrancic feels the excitement levels will continue to rise ahead of City's first game back.

"There’s definitely some excitement around the group that we know that the season is restarting soon.  

"We know we still have a chance to make it and stay up and we cannot wait for the first game back, it will be like a do or die game.  

"We will be well-prepared for it. Now we are trying to get our bodies ready for action and the coach is happy with our fitness levels, it’s now about maintaining it. 

"I’m pretty confident that we will be fitness-wise and mentally well prepared for the first game back."

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