AMBER Barrett is the first Donegal footballer back on a competitive stage today.
The Milford woman should feature as relegation-threatened FC Köln take on runaway league leaders Wolfsburg (kick-off 1pm Irish time) as action in the Frauen-Bundesliga returns today.
With France, Spain and England having aborted the rest of the season for their respective women’s leagues after the stoppage caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the resumption of the Frauen-Bundesliga and possible return of the Champions League is all that remains in the top-level women’s soccer calendar in Europe.
“Germany has been a little bit different to the other countries, I think they’ve handled it a lot better,” Barrett said.
“They were on top of it (controlling the spread of the virus) straight away, and that obviously has helped.
“Of course, the most important thing is that everyone wants to play but you never want to put yourself in a situation where there’s a threat to your health.”
Barrett returned to Germany in March following an international break and immediately went into lockdown.
The Republic of Ireland international has spent downtime honing her grasp of Germany, but the players haven’t stayed idle.
She said: “We had to maintain our fitness because we didn’t know when we were going to get the call to say we were going back, and in fairness everybody (in the team) did their bit.”
Players recently returned to training with strict physical distancing measures in place while a rigid testing programme was rolled out across the League.
Barrett said: “They’re covering themselves extremely well and we’re making sure that everybody’s 100 per cent, so there’s no risk or potential threat of it coming in or coming out.
“It’s been interesting to see how it’s being done over here. Obviously it’s brilliant to be tested and to be tested so frequently. Nearly now, it’s just like another part of your day. It’s good on that front, to know that we’re going into the games with everybody 100 per cent.”
Wolfsburg are eight points clear at the top of the table, but Barrett and FC Köln are chomping at the bit.
She said: “We couldn’t have re-started against more difficult opposition, but we just have to turn up on the day and make it difficult for them, and hopefully I’ll get one little chance at the end of the game to win it for us.”Tags: