India's Under-17 women's football team head coach Thomas Dennerby is impressed by the work put in by his players who are training at their homes by following the fitness regime laid down by him. The age group FIFA showpiece was to be held in India in November but has been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic which has claimed the lives of more than 2.5 lakh people globally and over 1800 in India.
With the country in the midst of a coronavirus-forced lockdown, the players have returned home, and so has Dennerby. But before getting back to Sweden, he had given his wards a fitness regime to follow at their homes. The AIFF has also arranged a video conference of the players with the experienced Swedish coach as well as the support staff. "The girls already had a very detailed fitness programme which was provided to them earlier. They report to Per (Karlsson, the team's fitness coach) and all other staff also follows," Dennerby said.
Indian Women Football U-17 Team ( Source: MyKhel)
"I'm really impressed. With the players," said Dennerby who has previously led the senior national women's teams of Sweden and Nigeria at the FIFA Women's World Cup. Dennerby said the players need to be encouraged to maintain calm and not worry about missing training. "I told them to keep on training with focus, follow the fitness program they have and to report to the staff about what they do every day. Also, I asked them to stay calm and not worry about missing training sessions."
"I follow the daily reports on a special WhatsApp group and we can see that the girls work very hard. , it was more a social relationship meeting. Just saying hello and encouraging everyone to keep on training hard," he added. Dennerby also had another online meeting with his staff in order to strategise the webinars and modules for the coming weeks. Five cities - Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Guwahati, Ahmedabad and Navi Mumbai - have been finalised to host the tournament. The FIFA, All India Football Federation and the Local Organising Committee are working on finalising a future date for the tournament.