West Ham’s Fornals relieved to return to training

PUBLISHED: 15:00 28 May 2020

West Ham United's Pablo Fornals celebrates scoring at London Stadium

West Ham United's Pablo Fornals celebrates scoring at London Stadium

PA Wire/PA Images

West Ham United’s Pablo Fornals revealed his relief about the return to training at Rush Green as the Premier League looks to restart next month.

Top-flight action has been suspended since March 13 due to the coronavirus pandemic, but clubs are set to move to step two in the return to training protocol, involving contact, having worked in small, socially-distanced groups so far.

And having spent two months of lockdown living alone, Fornals welcomes the chance to mix more with his clubmates.

“For me it was like a saviour because I was alone,” he told

“I came to London to play football, so staying here and not being able to play was very tough for me. Just to go to Rush Green for a run or to touch the ball was nice!”

The 24-year-old has been left alone in his apartment since early March, after his girlfriend and sister returned to Spain.

You may also want to watch:

Fornals would only leave for his one daily piece of exercise over the eight-week period and speak to loved ones on video calls, while staying fit, reading and trying to improve his English.

And having been tested three times for coronavirus since the return to Rush Green, Fornals is looking forward to the prospect of competitive football returning.

He added: “I don’t have a PlayStation so I just read books, watch shows and films. I watch The Simpsons at lunchtime, so I am trying to improve my English!

“It’s been a lot of time without football. It’s all strange and different for everyone, so we have to do the things the government say and be good citizens.

“If the government and league decide that we play, I think it’s obvious that the players need safety and security for us and for our families because, first of all, we are humans.

“The club and Premier League are doing good things and after this a decision will be made if we play or not this season.

“For all the Premier League and all the leagues, the most important thing now is to keep pushing and keep going together and be ready for when the league starts, because we had two months running in the park and doing exercise at home.

“To play games in a shorter period of time will be tough for us and our bodies, so we need to be good and this is like a pre-season.”

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Newham Recorder. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Newham Recorder