Baker Relishing Silver Boot Challenge

Jan 06, 2018 by

Brisbane Strikers coach Owen Baker is expecting some tasty pre-season action when his team takes the field at Lions Stadium in this season’s Kappa Silver Boot tournament beginning on Monday night.

The Strikers, who are returning to the tournament they did not contest last year after being beaten by Lions FC in the 2016 final, are drawn alongside Football Queensland Premier League clubs Eastern Suburbs, Southside Eagles and Capalaba Bulldogs in Group A.

Curiously, all three are clubs the Strikers have beaten – after keenly-contested struggles – in the qualifying rounds of the FFA Cup in recent seasons.

Baker said he was sure the competition will provide his squad with exactly what it needs ahead of an NPL Queensland season scheduled to kick off in the first weekend of February, some four weeks earlier than in previous seasons.

“All of the teams in the Silver Boot competition this year are quite strong. We know that Easts, Southside Eagles and Capalaba are going to be three competitive games,” said Baker tonight.

“That’s why we’ve gone back into the Silver Boot this year – we need that sort of match preparation heading into the season”.

While insisting that the focus of the Strikers’ coaching staff in the tournament would be on traditional pre-season objectives, Baker offered a hint that his team would be looking to go deep into the tournament.

“The most important thing from our point of view going into the Silver Boot is, come the end of it and come February 3, we are ready for the kick-off of the season,” Baker said.

“We need to get some football match kilometres into the legs of the players, learn a system and tactics that we’ll use ahead of the season and obviously attempt to get the new players to gel into the team.

“I think whichever club we are going to play wants to prove a point because they are preparing for a season themselves as well. Every player wants to earn that spot for the starting eleven for round one of the season.

“That’s no different whatever team we play and we are the same. We want to go out there and win every game that we play in.”

Strikers’ first game will be against Eastern Suburbs this Monday, 8 January at 6.30 pm.

That will be followed on Saturday, 13 January by Southside Eagles at 5.00 pm and Thursday, 18 January against Capalaba at 6.30 pm. The group winner will progress to the semi-finals and will be drawn against the winner of Group B, featuring

The 2017 Kappa Silver Boot groups are:

Group A – Brisbane Strikers, Eastern Suburbs, Southside Eagles, Capalaba Bulldogs

Group B – Brisbane City FC, Souths United, Gold Coast Knights, Wolves FC

Group C – Brisbane Knights, Centenary Stormers, Mitchelton FC, Moreton Bay United Jets

Group D – Lions FC, Holland Park Hawks, Ipswich Knights, SWQ Thunder

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