There’s some exciting news coming out of the Lions den this week with some big re-signings taking place.
In fantastic news, sure to make many Lions fans happy, the Lions have locked away both of it’s 2019 Captains and Vice-Captains for the 2020 season.
Peter McEvoy has re-committed for what will be his 5thseason as a Lion and fellow Co-Captain Ryan Exon re-commits for his 4thyear as a Lion.
McEvoy was excited to be a club leader and is prepared to establish the next generation of Coburg footballers, upon re-committing to the club, McEvoy commented:
“I’m very passionate about creating success at the Coburg Football Club and I believe my experience in educating and leading our younger players is important to establishing the next core group of leaders and people at our club. We were so close to winning more games throughout 2019 and I believe with our professional and selfless approach, along with the mateship and camaraderie our group has, that another pre-season and year together will definitely help generate more wins.”
“To me player retention is the most important factor to any future success at the Coburg Football Club. Having the leadership group send that clear message of our own commitment, shows the strength of the mateship in our playing group this year and our genuine care for helping drive the club’s on field success going forward.”
Fresh off playing his 50thgame for Coburg, Co-Vice-Captain Jesse Corigliano has also re-committed for a further 2 years and in 2020 enters his 6thyear as a Lion and the only player on the list to do so. Rigga is thrilled to remain at a club he loves so dearly and has seen him grow so much over his time at the club.
“Despite a lack of success I have never felt as confident in the future of the footy club in my time here and genuinely think we a heading in the right direction to becoming a consistently competitive VFL outfit. I feel that if we can retain a large percentage of our current playing group there will be a drastic jump in regards to wins and losses in 2020.”
“I love the people around the footy club as I’ve said on numerous occasions…. I feel at home at Coburg and couldn’t see myself anywhere else and I want to help everyone else feel the same way.”
Following a 2018 season which was affected by injury, Co-Vice-Captain Luke Bunker is having a tremendous 2019 season and has also re-committed for the 2020 season. Bunker was excited to have so many of the leadership group commit for 2020 so early.
“With the senior players such as Exon, McEvoy and Rigga signing on, it gives our group great stability which we haven’t had for quite a while and provides our club with strong leadership and direction.”
“I’m looking forward to what this group can achieve next year. We have such a young and exciting core group of players that have learnt and gained a lot of experience together this year and has fast tracked the development of our group heading into 2020.”
Mitch Podhajski is the 5thmember of the leadership group to also re-commit for the 2020 season and in doing so is joined by first year, key position Lions Liam Whelan, Mark Baker and Floyd Bollinghaus who have both shown great signs in 2019.
Having 5 of our 6 leadership group members signed up and committed is a great sign of the belief in the club from the playing group and in particular it’s leaders.
“My decision to re-sign was quite easy as I’ve absolutely loved my time at the footy club from the first day I walked in. I see a very clear direction the club is heading in and I would love nothing more than to be apart of what is hopefully the start of a successful era.”
It‘s incredibly important to keep the group together as we’ve had so many close losses this year and if those results turn in our favour we are talking about finals footy right now. With added experience and an extra preseason why can’t we be in a better situation next year.”
“I’m super excited to see Mark Baker re-sign for another 2 years. Such a young player with one of the biggest upsides at the club I believe. Add another 2 years of pre season and development on top of what he’s already shown, he’s going to be a superstar for the club.”
In 2020, Billy Cannolo will be entering his 4thyear as a Lion and with 25 VFL games under his belt now and coming off a collarbone injury sustained this season, he’ll be confident of having a greater impact next season.
Second year ruckman Adam Swierzbiolek is another that is excited to continue playing VFL football and whilst still very aspirational to play at the highest level possible, he has committed to the Lions for the 2020 and 2021 seasons with Coburg.
Sam Binion joined the Lions midway through the 2018 season and went on to play 4 senior games. This year he has taken it to another level, playing 13 senior games, and we are excited to have Sam re-committing for 2020.
Will Donaghey showed impressive signs in his first year of VFL football, and he too has agreed to remain a Lion in 2020.
When joining our club in late 2018, Braedyn Gillard, Lucas Cavallaro and Brodie Foster all signed initial 2 year deals so with the latest re-signings this takes our total list of contracted players for 2020 to 15.
With the 2020 season being one that will provide many challenges through the changing of facilities, due to the redevelopment of Piranha Park, it’s great that these players are re-committed to the club and we are excited to have them as part of the Lion’s pride.
The list is taking great shape and over the coming weeks we will be announcing further re-signings, so stay tuned for more!
The full list of contracted players for 2020:
Peter McEvoy, Ryan Exon, Jesse Corigliano (contracted till the end of 2021), Luke Bunker, Mitch Podhajski, Adam Swierzbiolek (contracted till the end of 2021), Billy Cannolo, Liam Whelan, Will Donaghey, Mark Baker (contracted till the end of 2021), Floyd Bollinghaus, Sam Binion, Braedyn Gillard, Lucas Cavallaro and Brodie Foster.