Manchester City star Raheem Sterling believes clubs should be given at least four weeks to train before returning to competitive Premier League action following the coronavirus hiatus.
Much like most sport across the world, the Premier League has been on hold for two months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The United Kingdom has been hit particularly badly by the virus, which has been contracted by over 240,000 people across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, with over 34,000 confirmed deaths.
With the German Bundesliga resuming on Saturday and Spain’s LaLiga ramping up its own plans for a return, the Premier League’s next steps are being eagerly debated, with ‘Project Restart’ reportedly identifying June 13 as potential target.
But, following Newcastle United manager Steve Bruce’s suggestion to push the restart back until the end of next month, Sterling is also erring on the side of caution, stressing the need for at least a month of full training before competitive action returns.
Speaking in an interview with United States star Megan Rapinoe on his official YouTube channel, Sterling said: “You can’t come back in [playing matches] with one-and-a-half weeks, two weeks [of training].
“You need a full four or five weeks, especially if you’re going back into competition, you’re not playing friendlies, when you’re literally paid to win and it’s going to count for something.
“You do need that preparation, definitely, you can’t just go straight back into it.”