Indonesian Players Fast During Ramadan: Concerns for the National Team

Indonesia’s national football team consists of many players who follow the Islamic faith, and therefore, they are fasting from dawn until sunset during the month of Ramadan (from March 11 to April 10). This practice has an impact on their physical condition and training process as the team is preparing for two upcoming matches in the World Cup 2026 qualifiers.

During Ramadan, Muslims typically have two main meals, Suhoor (pre-dawn) and Iftar (post-sunset), both of which consist of vegetarian dishes. The total amount of food consumed by Muslims during Ramadan is higher than usual, as they eat more in the evening to replenish energy. However, fasting can significantly affect the players’ physical condition and stamina, especially in the context of football matches.

Head coach Shin Tae-yong expressed his concerns, stating, “We are trying our best to improve the nutrition of the players in the current difficult situation. The two matches against the Vietnamese national team will be very challenging, and the players need to put in extra effort.”

In the past, Coach Shin Tae-yong had to adjust the team’s training schedule to late evening sessions when the players had fully replenished their energy. In 2021, the South Korean strategist faced difficulties when the players were fasting, and this year, Indonesia drew 2-2 against the weaker team from Africa – Burundi, partly due to the players’ physical impact during Ramadan.

Players like Yaya Toure and Samir Nasri have previously shared their struggles with injuries and health issues while playing during Ramadan. For Coach Shin Tae-yong and the Indonesian national team, finding the right balance between fasting and training is crucial to ensure the team’s performance in the upcoming matches.

According to the schedule, Indonesia will face Vietnam at Bung Karno Stadium on March 21. Five days later, the team will play against Vietnam again at My Dinh Stadium. The challenge of fasting during Ramadan poses a significant obstacle for the Indonesian players, and it will require careful planning and management to optimize their performance on the field.

#Indonesia #Football #Ramadan