With everyone stuck at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s been left to video games and eSports to fill the gaping void of sports in our daily lives.
It’s helped that footballers, including several from Chelsea, as well as entire teams are getting into the mix, working to bridge the generational gap that stands between the real life physical and the virtual digital forms of the game.
Young striker Tammy Abraham might not be representing Chelsea in online FIFA tournaments (yet), as Reece James and Emerson Palmieri have, but during this time of social isolation, he is also turning to video games to help pass the time and to scratch that competitive itch that drives most professional athletes.
“I’m good. I’ve just been chilling — legs up, laid back and just been playing Playstation all day — mixing it up playing FIFA, Call of Duty and Fortnite. I have come so close at winning on Warzone but I haven’t yet.”
But of course it’s not just about “chilling” and video games overload — the dangers of which may be just as real as any addiction. As it is the case with his teammates, Tammy’s working hard at home to keep up the level of fitness needed to get back to training as soon as the green light to do so is received.
“We have a schedule from the club. You can mix it up if you really want to. It is going for a run, different types of run, upper-body sessions, lower-body sessions. I keep active and any time I have the chance to kick a ball around the house I always take advantage of that and it has been good I have been staying active and fit.”
Nutrition for him is thankfully not an issue either, with his family taking care of him.
“My sister or my mum or dad cook for me, I am lucky to have them in the house and not have to do it myself.”
Abraham’s of Nigerian descent through his father, and thus one of the main dishes in their household is jollof rice, a traditional meal in many West African nations.
Regional differences in style between Nigeria and Ghana have led to the so-called “jollof wars” as people have decided there is a need to claim one or the other as the best. Tammy’s of course siding with Nigeria.
“Can I cook jollof? Absolutely not but my mum can so probably the meal I have had most in quarantine has been jollof rice.
“The Nigeria version is my choice to be honest. The Ghanaian one is a little bit more spicy but it is about the flavours, not just about the spice, how it sits in your mouth, how it digests into your stomach.”
-Tammy Abraham; source: BBC via Chelsea FC