ISLE OF Wight-born footballer Dan Butler was having a superb first season with Peterborough United in the League One promotion hunt — until coronavirus struck.

Dan, who made it to the League Two play-off final with Newport County last season, but lost 1-0 to Tranmere Rovers at Wembley, signed for Posh in the close season.

Peterborough were one of the favourites to go up — and hit good form going into the run-in.

He also scored against his former club, Portsmouth, in a crucial six-pointer.

Isle of Wight County Press: Dan Butler celebrating making the play-off final for Newport County last season.Dan Butler celebrating making the play-off final for Newport County last season.

But frustratingly for Dan, 25, lockdown came at just the wrong time.

However, although he is disappointed the season was halted, it has had its positives, as Dan explains.

"Obviously, the coronavirus outbreak has been a worrying time for everyone — me and my family included," he said.

"That being said, I have loved being at home with my wife and little girl every day. 

"It’s given me a unique opportunity to spend a lot of quality time with them — something I hadn’t been able to do before. I’ve loved it!

"With regards to the football season being temporarily postponed, I would be gutted if we weren’t able to carry on our push for promotion, once all of this has blown over and it is safe to return to football.

"The football club has put a lot of hard work into getting us into the great position we're in, so losing that chance of becoming a championship club would hurt.

"For now though, the most important thing is for us to stay safe and look after our loved ones. 

"Over the first couple of weeks of lockdown I unusually had plenty of down time. As the past couple seasons were quite intense, so a rest was needed.

"Since lockdown  started, I’ve been using a rowing machine, kindly lent to me by Ben Rouse, who lives on the Isle of Wight.

Isle of Wight County Press: Peterborough's Dan Butler on the weights at home during lockdown.Peterborough's Dan Butler on the weights at home during lockdown.

"The back of my car is full of weights and gym equipment I borrowed from the training ground, so I could keep up with my strength work.

"Our driveway has turned into my own personal gym.

"The club has given us all programmes we must complete on a daily basis, so there is still structure and routine in our days.

"Mentally, I’ve found it easy to stay switched on and motivated, with the hope that when this is all over, we will have nine games left to try to get promoted.

"I haven’t read too much about what might be happening to the football season. The only thing us as players can control at the moment, is ours and our family’s safety and making sure that when we do hopefully resume the season, we are ready to hit the ground running.

"I’m sure we will all find out more in the next week or two. 

"I think I speak on behalf of every football player when I say the most important thing at this time is everyone's health and safety.

Isle of Wight County Press: Dan Butler working out on his driveway during the coronavirus lockdown.Dan Butler working out on his driveway during the coronavirus lockdown.

"I cannot see anyone being put at risk for a game of football, so when the current situation eases off, I’m sure football will start again. 

"Thankfully me, my wife and little girl are healthy. Both of our families are back on the Island, healthy, and in positive spirits.

"Thanks to FaceTime, they’ve all been able to see us everyday. It will be special when we can all see each other properly again. 

"I hope everyone stays safe and we can all get back to all doing what we love — sooner rather than later."