10 April 2020

Liverpool and Scotland star Christie Murray gives an insight into what it's like to self-isolate as a professional footballer

It's Easter weekend, it's sunny and everyone's being told to 'stay at home'.

That's tough for most of us, but what's it like if you're an athlete, and going outside and running around a lot is what you're all about.

We caught up with Liverpool and Scotland's Christie Murray to find out. 

Speaking exclusively to NewsChain she said: "It is quite tough, I’m not going to lie, especially when you are used to being so active and out and about. 

"I think the good thing about being an athlete is you can adapt and we are still being given programmes and things which we can do at home.

"That keeps my mind busy, but I’m just making the most of what I’ve got right now. I’m still training everyday and I’ve got a garden that I can use.

"We are allowed out once a day at the moment, so I am making sure that I am going to the park and doing my running. 

"For me, it’s just making sure I’ve still got goals everyday and achieving them to make sure that I’m ready for when the season is back."

With the future unknown for sports star, Murray believes it's all about being prepared for what's to come

Coronavirus has not only forced the public to stay at home, it has also caused all sporting events globally to be postponed or cancelled. 

The Women's Super League was initially postponed until April 30, but last week it was confirmed it would follow suit with the men's Premier League and be put on hold to resume only when safe to do so. 

But Murray's Liverpool, who currently sit bottom of the league, had felt they were just starting to gain momentum.

The 29 year-old striker, who has made 19 appearances for her club and earned 63 caps for her country, said: "Our performance in parts improved, just before it had all been postponed, which was annoying given the run of fixtures we had coming up.

"One of the most important things right now is to make sure that everyone is healthy and for us obviously it’s making sure we are all together, so that when we return we are all fit and focused for when the games are back and all ready to go.

"The more people stay at home and stick to it, the quicker we can get back on the pitch. It’s always better to tackle it earlier than continuing it on," she added.

Murray's career in the WSL has seen her spend time with Arsenal, Bristol and Doncaster before signing for Liverpool in 2018. She then made her international debut for Scotland in 2010 after making her way up through the youth ranks. 

So, now that she's self isolating, how is her fitness monitored? 

"We use an app that tracks running that we do and if people don’t do the running outside and they do it on the bike then you can send in your heart rate data. 

"There is trust, but there is also ways of monitoring what we are doing which of course is really good because they can see how much we are doing and whether or not we are doing enough."

But Murray and her teammates aren't too worried about their psychological state as Liverpool and Scotland are providing support for 'anyone who needs it'.

With all the speculation about the future, Murray stays in contact with her teammates in order to maintain the team bonding.

"We do make sure that we are keeping in touch and making sure that everyone is doing their training and encouraging each other. 

"It is easy to forget how much you actually enjoy that part like just being on the pitch and the ball, we all love playing it."

Murray travelled with Scotland to San Pedro del Pinatar in Spain ahead of their Pinatar Cup campaign

Despite concerns over the virus, Murray brought some positivity back home after Scotland won the Pinatar Cup in Spain. 

"I feel it was really positive, we played three different friendlies and obviously won all three. They were all different types of games, we rotated the squad and I was involved in all three which was brilliant for me. 

"It was disappointing to return home to our season being put on hold, but for us as a national team it was a good camp.

"It was great to prepare us for the up and coming European qualifiers which, unfortunately, have also been postponed.

"We are in the right place and doing the right things so again, it’s just making sure we are all ready and focused for whenever they do start back again."

The tournament was part of the national side's preparation for the up and coming European qualifier fixtures, with the tournament set to begin next summer.

However, last week the Danish FA announced that the women's tournament had been pushed back until the summer of 2022, but this is yet to be confirmed by UEFA. 

Scotland's games against Cyprus and Albania have been postponed until further notice. But if at any point the fixtures were to go ahead, their game against Albania will be special for Murray as it is set to be played in Edinburgh. 

"It’s always good to be at home to play in front of your family and your friends, that is more special so you know that everybody is in the crowd watching, it gives you an extra lift."

At a time when so much is unknown, Murray, like the rest of us, is desperate to find out. 

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