Fifty-five days after the German top flight was suspended, players and coaches of FC Cologne returned to the training ground on Thursday much to the delight of the Nigerian fullback.
Super Eagles’ newest invitee, Kingsley Ehizibue, has expressed his happiness to be back touching the ball in training sessions while declaring his eagerness to be ready for the club’s next league match.
The Bundesliga is set to resume action on May 16 with Ehizibue, and his Cologne teammates billed to face FSV Mainz 05 on Sunday, May 17.
No fan would be allowed into the Müngersdorfer Stadion when the Billy Goats take to the pitch for their Game Week 26 fixture as one of the measures taken to reduce the risk of spreading the coronavirus.
Constant testing is another, with Ehizibue already subjected to at least three COVID-19 tests in the last few weeks, and he admits it’s a terrible experience.
“Testing is no fun. That cotton swab goes deep down your throat, then down your nose, down to the back of your head,” the former PEC Zwolle defender told Voetbal Zone.
“It keeps tears in my eyes every time. Luckily, it lasts briefly, and it’s important that it happens. But it’s not nice.”
However, the joy of kicking a ball around with his mates far outweighs the discomfort of the testing swab for the 24-year-old, and he reveals he’s glad football is back.
“When I was allowed to touch the ball again on the very first training session, I was so happy. And now we can start duels again.
“Are we fit enough to play a game on May 17? I think so. Also, although we trained for this in small groups, and by distance, we have trained quite intensively. We have really trained intensively.”
Ehizibue has made 23 appearances for 10th-placed Cologne, with his fine displays earning him a first-time invitation to the Super Eagles in February.