Town defender Sonny Bradley has insisted that the players will be ready to restart the Sky Bet Championship season when it’s proposed to resume on June 20th, if that provisional date becomes set.
Despite having less than three weeks to prepare for the home clash against Preston North End, the captain is happy with the condition of his colleagues who are all now back training.
Speaking to the local media via Zoom yesterday, Bradley said: "I wasn't sure, the boys coming back in and seeing them for the first time last week, what sort of shape they would be in and how far off it they’d be. But looking at the boys last week, we look sharp and we look ready to go.
“Obviously we do need a couple of weeks like every team does, but over the course of the last nine weeks, we have been locked down, but we have also been able to train."
The 28-year-old then detailed methods the squad have been using to keep in shape during the coronavirus pandemic, adding: “On zoom we have been doing certain training programmes and we’ve been able to get out, whether it’s on the road, or the grass for an hour, or 45 minutes and get a training session in, so I’m pleasantly surprised to see how good shape the boys are in.
“I think at this club we’ll be ready if that’s the 20th June confirmed. We’ll be ready and if we have to play nine games in five weeks, I don’t see that being a problem."
He added: "Championship sides these days have large squads. A lot of Championship squads have 30-plus pros available, so it might be a case of having to use more players.
"Some players might not be able to play. If it's six games in three weeks, or whatever, it may be that some players might not be able to play that, but I think Championship clubs have enough resources and players available to get through this difficult period.
"Certainly, speaking to this group of boys, when it comes to fielding a squad for the next nine games, I can't see it being a problem."
The progression into phase two of training took place today with the squad training as one group, but speaking yesterday, the former Plymouth Argyle defender was quick to accept that some players may feel uncomfortable.
He said: “I think it’s important that I don’t speak for any individual, as different players at different clubs will have different responsibilities and if a player turned around at this football club, we’ve already been told, and they didn’t feel comfortable about coming into training or playing matches, then I think at this time, then we would have to respect that.
“I know that Paul Watson and Gary Sweet would speak to those individuals and we have been told if we do feel uncomfortable, to speak up, as there’s nothing worse at this time than boys feeling uncomfortable, coming in training, thinking they have to play when in the back of their mind, they’re really uncomfortable.
"So I think we have to respect what individuals want to do and take things from there.”
THE FULL ZOOM PRESS CALL WITH SONNY IS NOW AVAILABLE TO WATCH ON IFOLLOW HATTERS FREEVIEW BY CLICKING HERE.