With football currently suspended due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we caught up with Luke Thomas to talk about life away from the club.
These are uncertain times for everyone – not just in the UK, but globally – and the versatile midfielder has taken this opportunity to be with his loved ones.
“I’ve gone back home to Cheltenham, where I’m from, to spend time with my family,” said Thomas, who turned 21 in February.
“My family is all good, thankfully, as are my friends. I just hope that everyone else is OK and they’re all following the procedures.”
Despite not being able to train with his teammates on a daily basis, he is still keeping on top of his fitness so he is ready to hit the ground running when the season eventually resumes.
It may take some time to regain match sharpness, but Thomas is keen to be in the best shape possible for when he steps back out on the pitch once more.
“Of course, every day, I’ve been doing a bit of fitness work that we’ve been set by the club,” continued the Reds’ number 16. “It’s mainly running activities for your position, Luke [Dopson] the fitness coach has done us all a programme each, so I need a football pitch where I can do my running that he’s set. It last about half an hour to an hour and I get on with that every day.
“He’s also sent a strength and conditioning programme that you can do at home, so you don’t need any weights or stuff like that. We obviously didn’t want to be in gyms at this current time, so he’s set us this that we can do at home.”
So used to having a hectic schedule, it is difficult for the players to adjust to the amount of spare time currently on their hands.
However, Thomas has found a few ways of easing the boredom – including channelling his inner Mary Berry, as he explained.
“It’s tough; I’ve been bored a lot,” he admitted. “But I’ve seen my little nephew quite a lot and taking him on walks, so that’s killed a lot of my boredom to be fair to him. I also baked a cake yesterday – it was a chocolate one, so I’ll have to go and burn that off at some point! I did that with my nephew as well and got my mum to come and help, too.
“I’ve watched a few TV programmes as well; I’ve started Prison Break again – that’s probably one of my favourite ones, to be fair.”