‘We’re not in prison here’ – RB Leipzig boss Nagelsmann discusses life in quarantined training camp

Bundesliga teams will be required to stay in isolation for the remainder of the season as the league gets ready to return on Saturday

RB Leipzig manager Julian Nagelsmann has spoken out about life in quarantined training camp, as the Bundesliga gets set to return on Saturday.

The German top flight is set to become the first European league to return from its coronavirus-enforced hiatus, which has been in effect since March.

All matches will be played behind closed doors, with RB Leipzig set to take on Freiburg on Saturday as they look to chase down first-place Bayern Munich.

Nagelsmann’s side are currently in third place, five points back of the defending Bundesliga champions.

All Bundesliga clubs are required to stay in quarantine for the remainder of the season and Nagelsmann has said despite the isolation, his players have plenty to keep them occupied.

“Basically it’s like a summer training camp,” Nagelsmann told Goal and SPOX. “We will try to prepare for the games, not only the Freiburg game, but also the games afterwards. But in itself, it’s like a summer training camp. It will be a normal training week, the players will sleep here.

“The boys can keep themselves busy. We have billiards, darts, Playstation and a TV in the room. So we are not in prison here. We may have a bit more meetings, but there won’t be a discussion or movie night every night. The boys are old enough to take care of themselves for two or three hours.”

Nagelsmann has admitted that playing without fans will be an adjustment, saying that teams with more experienced players may have an edge. 

“You have to work your moments a little differently without spectators,” Nagelsmann said. “It is more about coaching points and if you have already experienced many situations, you can draw on a greater wealth of experience and support the boys who play next to you, especially the young players. Mutual coaching on the pitch will become a factor in these games.”

The former Hoffenheim boss also said that he may have to tone down the amount he shouts during a match, with coaches discouraged from yelling instructions without a mask to reduce the potential spread of the virus.

“I am one who coaches very aggressively and screams loudly so that my players can hear me,” Nagelsmann said. “I will certainly have to change that. But whether I can do that right away, I’ll put a big question mark.

“It is definitely on my agenda because coaching without spectators can be a little scary. So I’m going to try to put in the proper guardrails.”