The Brisbane Lions have set themselves a June deadline to acquire funding for their proposed new training base at Springfield.
The Brisbane Lions have little more than three months to secure government funding for their proposed $60 million training base at Springfield.
As Lions great Alastair Lynch spoke of his optimism about the future of the embattled club on Monday, Brisbane chief executive Malcolm Holmes admitted the Springfield venture had hit a major roadblock.
A $15 million pre-election promise by the Labor Government is now in grave doubt with the Liberal Party holding power.
Holmes stressed the Lions and the AFL remain in negotiations with the federal government and they had a June deadline to secure the funding.
The training facility, which is already under construction, is also receiving funding from the Ipswich council, Springfield Land Corporation and Queensland government.
But the Lions are now exploring alternatives, including extending their contract at the Gabba beyond 2015.
“Obviously the change of government has given us some challenges,” Holmes said.
“We don’t see any reason why, at the moment, that Springfield is not the preferred choice, but we have to secure the funding or otherwise we won’t be moving anywhere.”
The Lions have seen the Springfield base as a key in returning to the top of the AFL after struggling to compete since their golden era a decade ago.
Triple premiership forward Lynch admitted on Monday Brisbane had been disadvantaged due to their lack of resources, but he was confident the club was now back on the right track.
He is a fan of former teammate Justin Leppitsch as coach and disagreed with Matthew Lloyd’s assertion the Lions were in for a world of pain in 2014.
“I’m really encouraged by the direction the club’s going,” Lynch said. “There’s been some educated guesses from the outside at how the club’s going, I think if you’re informed, I think it’s encouraging.
“Observing the club over the last few years it’s fair to say they were under-resourced in the football club, that’s been beefed up. To get Leigh Matthews back in the club was fantastic.”
Lynch, a Lions Hall of Fame member, pointed to the retention of young gun second-year gun Sam Mayes on a two-year deal as a sign the club is overcoming the go-home factor which saw five youngsters leave the Gabba last year.