Cleverley trying to retain sense of normality during pandemic

Tom Cleverley says Watford's game against Sheffield United on Saturday is "huge" as they aim to put an end to their miserable early-season form.

Watford's Tom Cleverley says he's trying to stick to his usual routine but admits it hasn't been easy due to the uncertainty created by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Cleverley, like the rest of the Hornets squad, is currently having to work from home in an effort to stop the spread of the deadly virus.

In an attempt to keep the squad as fit as possible during the outbreak, Watford have delivered gym equipment to every member of the first team, while a personal training regime has been designed by the coaching staff.

It is a far cry from what Cleverley was before the club’s London Colney training ground was closed and a lockdown imposed by the government, but he says he’s trying to stick to usual routines.

“As a footballer you just try to keep yourself in as good a shape as possible and try to stick to routines,” he told Sky Sports.

“I’m eating three meals a day at the times I usually would and I’m training at times I usually would.

“Obviously, you don’t want to do too much because you don’t know when the return date is going to be, but you’ve got to just keep yourself ticking over and get yourself in shape for when we are asked to return to play.”

The 30-year-old admits that while players are keen to get back to work, there is no desire within the squad to start playing again until it is safe to do so.

He also praised the work done by the club during this difficult time, claiming they have kept the team up to date on what the situation is regarding when thing might start getting back to normal.

In terms of when the season does restart, Cleverley is delighted the team have given themselves a fighting chance of staying up this season under the guidance of Nigel Pearson.

Since Pearson took charge, Watford have lifted themselves off the bottom of the Premier League and they currently sit outside the relegation zone, albeit only on goal difference.

Cleverley says there is still a lot of work to do to if Watford are to survive and says they’ll be straight down to business when the time is right.

“As a squad we believe we’ve got the players, the attitude and the work ethic to get ourselves out of the situation we’ve found ourselves in,” he added.