Wolves defender Roman Sais is a high-profile Muslim Premier League player and spoke of a different experience this Ramadan as his club signed the Muslim Athletes Charter.
Joining Wolves in 2016, he said Sky Sports News What does Ramadan mean to him as a professional footballer?
“This is really important for me, as a Muslim. It’s a wonderful time to spend with family and then improve your faith and your knowledge of Islam,” he said.
Ramadan has already started and is expected to continue till Sunday 1st May. During this period, Muslims are expected to fast for about a month between sunrise and sunset. This period includes regular daily prayers, charity work and self-reflection.
The Wolves signed the contract in September last year Certificate of Muslim Athlete Encouraging Muslim participation in sports. This means more access to halal food, the benefits of prayer, and consulting Muslim athletes with their faith-based needs.
“It makes a lot of sense for a player like me and other Muslim players, so we know we may have a different meal option, now we’re training a little later, so we sometimes miss some prayers so it’s good to have a prayer room here to do it, He said Sky Sports News.
During daylight hours, Muslims will not eat or drink until sunset each day. There are several athletes in the Premier League who will be fasting all the time.
When asked what the most challenging aspects are, Wolves Defender said: “Maybe drink, not alcohol because we spend a lot of time on the pitch, working hard and even going out to the gym.
“So, I think it’s more of a drink for me. I think it’s different from each player. The easiest thing to do is not worry about it, although it is sometimes difficult.“
The Moroccan captain spoke of his experience discussing faith in the club’s locker room.
“If they want to know something about Ramadan; ‘How do you treat food and drink during the day?’ This kind of question, or just asking why we are celebrating Ramadan in our religion, so this is a nice chat, and you can learn a lot from each other. “
Sais mentions how the holy month makes him more grateful for the struggles people face around the world.
“You can see, for example, the importance of food and drink. You can even teach your kids, you can see we’re not eating, we’re not drinking. It’s really hard to imagine people fighting for food every day. “
At the end of Ramadan, Muslims around the world celebrate Eid al-Fitr. Families celebrate together by exchanging food and gifts.
The Wolves player says he really misses his grandmother’s food, and although he is not with extended family, he enjoys festivals with family in England the most.
“I miss Eid a lot because most of the time we are here for training or sports, but usually it is a good day. Go to the mosque for morning prayers, take some food and gifts for the children, ”he added.
“It simply came to our notice then. For example, when I come back from training we try to have a good day. “