Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, Paris Saint-Germain has updated fans with video interviews with some of the players asking them how they’re doing during this period of confinement and how they’re staying fit.
The latest installment of the “Allo” series with journalist Ambre Godillon features Thomas Meunier, which is slightly odd timing considering it was reported that he will not sign an extension with the club and could depart on June 30, when his current contract expires.
FIFA will allow players to temporarily extend their expiring contracts but Meunier would have to agree to that. If he doesn’t, the Belgium international would have played his last game for the capital club on March 4 against Olympique Lyonnais and would be unavailable if the Coupe de France, Coupe de la Ligue, and UEFA Champions League resume in August.
None of that was addressed in the interview as you would expect but it was interesting when Meunier claimed that he didn’t miss football that much. He clarified that it’s because he’s busy with his three young children and doesn’t really have a lot of time to think about football. Anyone with young kids can certainly relate.
Godillon: Hi Thomas! How are you doing? Tell me all about it.
Meunier: Pretty well, in this period of confinement, I miss football, but not that much. We’re with the kids, we have a lot to take care of, and we don’t necessarily think about football. Keeping in shape, I guess.
Godillon: How do you keep yourself in shape?
Meunier: I keep myself in shape thanks to the individual programs sent by the staff. We make sure that every other day we do endurance training, the strengthening, mobility, etc. It’s quite complete, it’s like what we do when we’re at the Camp des Loges.
Godillon: And you still manage to keep in touch with your teammates, with the coaching staff?
Meunier: Yes, with the teammates we write to each other from time to time, we try not to forget that we are Paris Saint-Germain players.
Godillon: But then you don’t forget that you’re a daddy too. Obviously, there.
Meunier: Yes, it’s a full-time job, it’s harder than football. Three children at home, it’s not necessarily easy, especially when they’re young. No school, no nursery, that’s when you understand that being a nursery nurse or a teacher is hard, and probably undervalued.
Godillon: And how do you keep busy with the kids? Do you manage to find new occupations, new interests at home?
Meunier: There’s the school program for the older kids, we do math, French, etc. For the little ones, it’s crafts, afternoon nap, it’s necessary for them and for the parents. We are lucky to have a small terrace, and balconies, so we play a little bit outside as soon as the sun is shining. We keep ourselves busy as much as we can.
Godillon: What do you miss the most from your normal life? Is it necessarily football, teammates, the dressing room, matches, pre-match coffee, or Parisian museums?
Meunier: I have coffee here, so it’s okay. When I say that I don’t miss football, it’s not exactly that. I miss the matches, the matches in front of the fans, the atmosphere, the atmosphere, all that context there. I guess.
Godillon: And precisely, in this particular context, do you have a message to pass on to those who are watching us?
Meunier: Stay at home! Follow the instructions until May 11th, we stay quiet and if everything goes well little by little it will be deconfinement, reopening of nurseries, schools, and colleges. For the restaurants and bars, it will be necessary to wait a little longer, but here it is necessary that we get out of this situation, to listen well to the instructions, to listen well to what the specialists advise us to do. People don’t necessarily listen. And then I would like to thank those who make sure that the sick are cured. The medical staff, the hospitals…to all those who help to turn things around.
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