News

Lions ready to roar at pre-season Silver Boot

Russell Miner, pictured playing for Enfglish clib Bedford Town last year, has linked with the Queensland Lions for the 2012 Premier League season.
Russell Miner, pictured playing for Enfglish clib Bedford Town last year, has linked with the Queensland Lions for the 2012 Premier League season.

YOU kind of get the feeling the Queensland Lions are back where they belong.

Because from 2002 to 2004 the Richlands-based side dominated the Premier League, clinching three straight titles before withdrawing from the senior men's competition to put all their energy into earning a place in the national A-League competition.

They were the club everyone envied, but also the club every player wanted to play for.

The Lions earned the right to return to the top-flight competition after being crowned Premier Division 1 champions last year.

After a tough rebuilding phase, which provided plenty of experience for their plethora of young talents, coach Graham Ross has got Luxury Paints Stadium once again abuzz with Premier League fever.

Ross believed this month's annual Silver Boot pre-season competition would be the start of a new era for the club, as they gear up for their first season back in the Premier League since 2004.

"With the season starting in early February, the Silver Boot is our pre-season so all the games will be vital to our preparations," he said.

"We will be trialling and rotating a few players to try and find the right combinations, but we will be taking every game seriously."

The Silver Boot, which is hosted by the Lions, is a month-long competition contested by Premier League, Premier Division 1 and Queensland State League teams.

Unlike previous years, plenty of eyes will be fixed on the Lions to see how well they stack up against their Premier League counterparts, including the University of Queensland, who they play in their tournament opener on Sunday, January 22.

Ross revealed almost all of last year's squad had returned to the club for 2012.

And while last year's top goal scorer Greg Thomas is expected to play fewer minutes after agreeing to be the side's assistant coach, Ross has managed to fill his void with the signing of former Brisbane Strikers National Soccer League player Russell Miner.

The 31-year-old will return home after four seasons with England club Bedfont Town and Ross expects the gun striker to be a great leader for the young Lions players.

"I like to have experience down the spine and good young talent around them," he said.

"We were looking for a goal scorer with a high level of experience especially after Greg Thoms scored a lot of goals last season so it was important to find someone like Russell who could score a lot of goals."

Ross admitted being competitive in a Premier League promotion year is hard, but said expectations were running high.

"We want to come back with a bang and have a good shot at it (the title)," he said.

"We're not coming in to make up the numbers."

The 2012 Silver Boot kicks off on Tuesday, January 17, with the grand final to be played on Sunday, February 12.

For the full draw and more information visit www.qldlionsfc.com.au


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Business owner, 71, hunts down graffiti artists

Graffiti damage at Barry Mills' business.

They saw three men spray tags on the Ipswich property

STABBING: Man rushed to hospital with chest wound

Police at the scene of an apparent stabbing at Redbank Plains this afternoon

Police investigate apparent domestic incident

Woman's $27k property crime spree

Ipswich Police Station and Courthouse. Photo: David Nielsen / The Queensland Times

She targeted homes she knew had valuable items inside

Local Partners

EXCLUSIVE: Meet Robert Irwin, wildlife photographer

SNAPPER: Apart from wildlife, photography is Robert Irwin's great passion.

Steve's boy has a passion for photography

Louis Tomlinson's tribute to late mother

Louis Tomlinson's new single is a tribute to his late mother.

Justin Timberlake stuns students with secret class

Justin Timberlake stunned high school students in Sydney

Carrie Fisher says Ford will be bugged by affair confession

Carrie Fisher is sure Harrison Ford is annoyed at her

Dakota Fanning rekindles romance with childhood sweetheart

Dakota Fanning rekindles romance with ex

Jennifer Lawrence apologises to the people of Hawaii

Jennifer Lawrence sorry for 'offensive' story

Essential to get new Maroochydore CBD fundamentals right

LOOKING AHEAD: The central business district at Maroochydore is planned to be the heart of the Sunshine Coast.

SunCentral reports good progress on 53ha Sunshine Coast city heart

'Crucial' farm land eyed by defence department

Lawson Geddes moving the Brangus cattle to higher ground - which is the land the Defence Department is interested taking for the Shoalwater Bay expansion.

"You can't have one without the other.”

Former Shark Show for sale for $1.3 million

Vic Hislop at the old Shark Show.

TALK about a jaws-dropping real estate opportunity.

There's a whole lot of luxury in this home

The Endeavour Foundation's latest prize home in Mountain Creek.

WHEN it comes to desirable homes, it's hard to go past a prize home.

Ipswich City Properties asset portfolio retains its value

Ipswich City Council Administration Building, South Street, Ipswich. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times

New website launched by Ipswich City Council

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!