This Friday afternoon, the players and staff of Bobigny hit the road to go play in the Bas-Rhin at Haguenau (Saturday, 3 p.m.).
More than four months after its last championship match (1-0 at Entente SSG on October 10), the 93 club, 6th in Group B of National 2, takes it back with this long trip of 480 km in the East (late match of the 6th day).
Last Thursday, the FFF formalized the resumption of the N2 for March 13 with late matches the two previous weekends.
The first Ile-de-France club concerned, Bobigny had to organize urgently.
"The Fédé communicated on Thursday and we only learned on Monday that we were to play five days later at Haguenau," explains Himed Hamma, Bobigny's co-trainer.
In accordance with health protocol, the players and staff had to take a PCR test on Thursday.
But of the 16 players who got on the bus for Haguenau, 5 had not yet received their results.
“The other 11 are negative but if we find out during the trip or before the game that one of the five is positive, what do we do?
Just to pass these tests, it was a real obstacle course.
With us, nobody makes a living from football, everyone works nearby.
The club only has six part-time federal contracts.
"We do not have the right to complain because many would like to be in our place"
The physical level of the players also worries the staff of Bobigny.
“After our elimination in the Cup against the Red Star (1-0 on February 13), we cut, because we could not train after 6 pm because of the curfew, continues Himed Hamma.
Since this week, as we resume, we are entitled to an exemption to train at 7:30 pm But that's short, we will run out of preparation time.
We have to do with the means at hand.
But we do not start on an equal footing.
Most of the other teams are going to have two more weeks to prepare before March 13.
We are already on fire.
In addition, there is a certain inequity when we know that the big clubs like Sedan or Ajaccio have always continued to train since December, just like the professional reserves who have been able to play friendly matches.
In sporting terms, the clubs will complete the first leg (until April 24) before being separated into two pools of 8, one for accession, the other for maintenance (7 matches from 8 May to 12 June).
“There are still gray areas on this formula and can we go to the end?
”, Underlines Himed Hamma who considers himself“ happy to play despite the constraints ”.
“Of course it's not ideal to resume in these conditions.
But we have no right to complain because a lot of amateur players and young people would like to be in our place.
We are privileged.
The players are happy to find their passion and competition again.
Football, for them, is also a significant financial supplement and without the match bonuses, some began to have difficulty making ends meet and sticking their tongues out.