Christoph Kramer speaks about the current situation due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus, how he’s keeping fit at home and the positives he’s taking from the situation.
Christoph, the Corona pandemic is currently dominating everyday life. How are you spending your time at the moment?
Kramer: I’m very lucky that I’ve just moved house (laughs). There’s a lot to do: packing and unpacking boxes, moving things in and out. So I’m keeping myself busy doing something useful at the moment. Of course I had to do a lot by myself because none of my friends could help me. But when I see people getting really bored on social media, I’m just happy to have something to do. Other than that I’ve also watched a few old football games and a couple of TV series in the evening. So fortunately I’ve haven’t really gotten bored yet.
There’s no training at the moment for the team. How are you keeping yourself fit at home?
Kramer: We get given training plans every day, which I’m working through diligently. It includes running as well as strength and conditioning training. We’ve also been given indoor bike machines by the club. I’m actually not a big fan of it but right now it’s the only proper way of keeping fit. So I’m still doing it of course. Other than that I haven’t got any other equipment for exercising at home but I’m carrying enough boxes back and forth at the moment (laughs).
What’s the communication like between the team at the moment?
Kramer: We mostly communicate via WhatsApp or Instagram, or even not at all. We normally see each other every day. Having a week away from your colleagues isn’t always a bad thing (laughs). However, if this continues as it’s going at the moment, we will definitely start to miss each other. But there’s nothing we can do about it. Eventually everything will be back to normal again. Until then, we have to settle for WhatsApp and Instagram, but that’s fine.
How do you manage to stay positive in the current situation?
Kramer: You always have to look at the bright side in every situation and I think we’re all living a bit more consciously at the moment. And it also shows us how quickly things can change. No one would have thought that we could ever be in this situation. When this is all over, we should continue living just as consciously and appreciate the things that we previously took for granted. We all value our health right now, and everyone would appreciate being able to go to work. These are all things that you don’t appreciate in normal life. That’s why you always need to take something positive out of the situation, and why we need to be more aware. We are much more grateful and humble at the moment and I think that can do a lot of good for us.
Is there something or someone that you already miss?
Kramer: Of course. The social contact, that we also took for granted, isn’t possible at the moment. Football is currently suspended and no one really knows when it will be able to continue. It’s not a good feeling when you don’t know how or when it will continue. So I’m missing football, social contact with lots of people and personal contact as well. But I’m not alone in this. Everyone misses these things at the moment.
The Bundesliga is postponed until at least 2nd April. How much do you miss the atmosphere of playing in a full stadium?
Kramer: That's another thing I took for granted and I now know that I shouldn’t. I will definitely appreciate that more when we’re able to play in front of a full crowd again. It’s simply beautiful. However, at the moment it’s just about being able to play again, even without any fans. But once this is all over, I will definitely enjoy playing in a sold-out stadium more than I might have done in the past. It was a great feeling to play here in my first year at Borussia. I still have that feeling today, but not as extreme as I did back then. These are things that I will appreciate more because I realise just how much I miss them.
There’s hardly anything else to talk about other than the Coronavirus. How do you keep yourself informed about the current situation?
Kramer: That’s something that drives me a little bit crazy. I can’t properly assess the situation because I read and hear so many different things. So I find it very difficult to form my own opinion about it. Of course I try to keep myself informed and watch TV programs and talk shows about it in the evenings, but at the end of the day no one really knows what will happen and what the extent of it will be. That’s what unsettles me the most. I don’t like being in the dark about things.
Borussia has already felt the effects of the virus. What do you make of how Borussia have handled the Corona crisis? The players, directors, and the board have all waived part of their salary and you have all shown solidarity with this…
Kramer: Borussia has dealt with the situation fantastically. But I also don’t think that’s something to boast about. Because I believe that should be a given; it’s the right thing to do and very important. So we shouldn’t brag about it. I work with all of the club’s employees on a daily basis and they always have my back. For us players our livelihoods aren’t at risk at the moment, but this can be the case for some of the employees. That’s why it’s certainly something we should do and a clear sign from the team that we want to help people so that no one has to worry. We will continue to do so and we are more than happy to.