COVID took a toll on Johnsen

COVID took a toll on Johnsen


Bjørn Johnsen was caught up in COVID-19 over the holiday season and is just beginning to recover.

“ I caught COVID on December 20, he explained during a videoconference on Wednesday. Everyone in the family has had it. I couldn't leave my bed for three or four days. I was unable to move around without leaning on something.

“On the fifth day I was able to get out of bed, but there are stairs in the house and I couldn't get up the stairs without holding on to the railing.”

The great striker, who lives in Spain where his wife is from, saw everyone around him sick, even his son who is still a baby. His nephew and niece were at his house for the holidays and they contracted the virus. The father of the CF Montreal player, who was visiting from Atlanta, was also affected.

“I had two doses of the vaccine, I am a professional athlete, this isn't normal for me,” said Johnsen, who appeared a little thinner than usual.

“I did a battery of tests while on vacation. I haven't really had a vacation,” he lamented.

And when the virus finally allowed him to breathe, he was in very poor shape.

“I had to recondition myself because I had no strength left. I couldn't lift weights. I was maybe at a third of my capacity when I arrived in Montreal. 

No wonder he hasn't walked the field with his teammates since the start of training camp. 'coaching. For now, his condition is being assessed daily.


“People don't take COVID seriously, and neither do I, and I've paid the price. I take advantage of the fact that I have a platform to tell people to do what it takes to be safe. Take the vaccine and take care of yourself. 

Without saying that he feared for his life, let's say that his misadventure led to a realization.

“&nbsp ;We take everyday things for granted. I am now trying to take advantage of it and I want to give the best of myself,” he says, adding that the situation gives him an impetus for a new start.

“This is a new opportunity for me to show what I can do and hit it big. I hope to be ready for the Champions League games, but I don't know if that will be the case. The medical team will decide. ”

Worst season

Johnsen didn't back down when it came to the 2021 season in which he scored twice in a game in May, his only two goals in 26 games.

” It's probably the worst season I've had in my career, but that doesn't matter.

During the off-season, the sporting director, Olivier Renard, spoke positively about Johnsen, which the player greatly appreciated. He now intends to show him his gratitude.

“Last year was atypical and not representative of what I can do. I hope things will get back to normal and I can give back to the organization. » 

The team heads for Florida 

On Thursday, CF Montreal heads to Florida with a first stop in Orlando where they will train until the end of next week and then travel to Fort Lauderdale.

The team will already play a first preseason match this Saturday against New York City FC, champions of the last MLS Cup. This will be the first opportunity for Wilfried Nancy to put his men to the test by sparing them.

“First, the idea is to increase the workload,” said Nancy. We will start with 45 minutes for everyone and then we will increase to 60 minutes.

“ Compared to the tactical aspect, I am still in reflection. The game we are playing against the USL team is only a few days before our game in Mexico. 


In addition to Lassi Lappalainen who has been working alone for a few days, Mason Toye has seen his return compromised by a new injury.

“I haven't had the details yet. He hurt himself by making a pass in individual training. We hope it won't be too long. »

Then Wednesday morning, it was the turn of another striker, Sunusi Ibrahim, to fall in battle.

“It's not easy to train on the synthetic,” said Nancy. Sunusi hurt his ankle a bit, but I'm not worried about that.

The attack is therefore already damaged if we add the name of Bjørn Johnsen who will still need time to recover from the effects of COVID-19.

Concerned< /p>

Furthermore, CF Montreal will see four of its players involved in the World Cup qualifier between Canada and Honduras tonight. Kamal Miller, Samuel Piette and Alistair Johnston represent Canada and Romell Quioto wears the Honduran jersey.

They will both have two more qualifying matches to play by Tuesday before joining the team in Florida. It's a lot of games in a short time for players returning to their activities.

“I don't want to say that I'm concerned, but we tried to prepare the players as best we could. as possible to recreate that intensity,” said Wilfried Nancy.

“I'm not hiding that it still worries me a little, but I'm going over it because it will happen all the time. time. »

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