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Short training window will be needed before games can resume, says Windsor boss

Windsor boss Mark Cooper also believes there will have to be a short window in December to give players a chance to get back up to full fitness with a mini pre-season.

The suspension of all football activity for a period of four weeks means the side could return to competitive action by early to mid-December, but Cooper believes it will be a little later than that. While zoom fitness sessions should keep the boys in decent shape throughout the next month or so, nothing can replace the ball work they do in training or that match-sharpness, which only comes with competitive game time.

“It’s a huge frustration,” he said. “And, yes, it will be longer for us because we haven’t played these past couple of weeks. So, clubs will need to be given some time for a mid-season pre-season. We will need some time to get the boys up to match sharpness.

“We think that over the next few weeks we’ll go back to Zoom sessions with the group. They worked well during the previous lockdown. We had one or two sessions a week on zoom and all the players dialled in. It was good. But, again, it doesn’t replicate what we need to do. It’s all very well keeping fit but if you don’t kick a ball, that has an impact as well.

“But, even if we could continue playing, I don’t think it would be viable for clubs at our level to play with no fans watching or revenue coming in.

Windsor have been struggling for form this season and rounded off this first juncture of the season with a 2-1 loss to Holmer Green, conceding a second to almost the last kick of the game. It was a blow which the manager and the players wanted to put right immediately, but COVID – first through their manager contracting the virus – and second, through this four-week national lockdown – means they’ll have to wait a long time to do that.

“We were eager to continue playing,” said Cooper. “You don’t want your last performance to be a loss when you don’t play very well. When that happens, you want to get back to it as quickly as possible. What’s happened is we’ll have a period of two months before we can right that wrong. It’s bitterly frustrating because you never want to finish on a loss like this.

“It’s been a tough couple of weeks not being able to get the boys back in. It’s been frustrating over the past two weeks because everyone else has been playing and the longer you’re apart as a group, the harder it is to get them going again when you do get back to it.”

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