Historic IGA National Premier Leagues NSW Mens 1 side APIA Leichhardt Tigers are embarking on a new era as they eagerly anticipate the 2014 season.
Its historical ground Lambert Park has gone through a major upgrade and has been recorded as boasting the largest artificial surface pitch in the Southern Hemisphere along with world class facilities that will boost the professionalism involved at the club.
On the playing front, club stalwart Billy McColl will again be the man with a plan alongside assistant coach and former Australian international Nicola Rizzo, in leading the Tigers charge as they hope to go one better in playing finals football in 2014.
The 2013 Waratah Cup Champions have recruited fruitfully in the off-season signing the likes of former Central Coast Mariners Academy players Jamie Lobb and Brad McDonald, Futsalroo Daniel Fogarty, former Northern Tigers star Travis Oughtred, ex-Stallions attacker Aman Hadid, well known midfielder Jordan Simpson and much travelled striker Matthew Mayora.
Joining these players is also an Italian born goalkeeper by the name of Enrico Rosellini who spent some time in the Italian lower leagues prior to his arrival in Australia.
Along with these fresh new faces, the club has retained the likes of players such as Brad Bartels, Andrew Bazi, David D’Apuzzo, Stephen Kayes, Brendan Reilly, Michael West and Franco Parisi.
APIA’s first match will be an away match to the new boys on the block St George FC on Sunday 16th of March while the opening of their new facility will take centre stage on Saturday 22nd March when they face staunch rivals Marconi Stallions.
It will be a carnival like atmosphere with dignitaries, media and a number of former Australian football stars in attendance as well as a bumper crowd expected to join in on what will be a festive and memorable day for the club.
-By Mark Stavroulakis