The Brisbane Lions are keen to avoid playing home matches at Metricon Stadium during the Gabba’s Olympic Games refurbishment but admit all options are “on the table” in their search for a ground.
The Lions must vacate the Gabba at the end of the 2025 AFL season to allow for the venue’s billion-doller to upgrade for the 2032 Brisbane Olympics.
Brisbane’s AFL team will play home matches elsewhere for three to four years before returning to the Gabba.
The Lions will then be forced to again play elsewhere in 2032 when the Olympics athletics track is laid in the Gabba arena.
Brisbane’s RNA Showgrounds loom as a potential temporary home for the Lions, provided a reported $80 million upgrade of the facility – which will also be used for the Olympics – takes place.
However, Lions CEO Greg Swann said the club had not been in contact with the state government regarding use of the showgrounds in “quite a while”.
“It’s in the mix for sure but we’ve got to see how it all stacks up and what the commercial deal is,” he said.
Swann said the Lions’ new Springfield training base was an also option for home matches, as well as Cairns and Townsville.
However, he said the Lions were reluctant to play at Gold Coast venue Metricon Stadium, the home of the Suns.
“Our people don’t go there – it’s too far away,” he said.
“But everything’s on the table. We haven’t committed to anything yet.”
Swann said the Lions wanted a home venue that could cater for close to 20,000 people while they were away from the Gabba.
That would mean the addition of temporary seating at Springfield.
“We’ve got to make it big enough,” Swann said.
“The advantage of Springfield is we own it all. We own the food, the beverages, the signage there, whereas we’ve got to do a commercial deal at the showgrounds.
“There’s a lot to play out yet.”
As there is this season as the Lions’ bid for their first flag since 2003.
Third-placed Brisbane on Sunday meet Richmond at the MCG, where the Lions haven’t won in eight years.
Brisbane defender Noah Answerth said he wasn’t concerned by the Lions’ poor recent record at the MCG.
“It’s a footy ground – they’re all pretty similar,” Answerth said.
“It’s obviously a bit bigger but it’s not dissimilar to most footy grounds.
“We haven’t spoken to much about it. We’re going up against Richmond, not the `G’.
“They’ve (still) got the aura. You’ve always got to respect them.”
Originally published as Brisbane Lions reluctant to move to Gold Coast