Redan coach Brendan Peace has issued a warning to rivals.
Take the Lions lightly at your own peril.
Although they will take a much younger and less experienced list in the Ballarat Football League, Peace is hopeful that with less pressure when it comes to expectations Redan might catch some more fancied opposition off guard and produce its share of surprise wins.
The loss of a wealth of top-end talent has forced Redan’s hand into putting a major emphasis of developing youth – something which is not going to happen overnight.
Peace said although the losses were much more significant than the club had envisaged, he was still comfortable with the direction the club was heading.
While he is facing a major challenge in his second year back in charge at Redan, Peace said there was a really positive feeling around the club.
He said it was all about rebuilding with a strong core of young talent and being as competitive as possible – tasks which would require patience.
Redan made a concerted effort to blood players from its under-18.5 list last year and although some promising types such as Tom Morrish, Tom Bryans and Kali Dawborn have moved on the Lions believe they have up to eight who will get plenty of opportunities this season to work alongside the likes of Liam Hoy, Orren Stephenson, Grant Bell, Dean Mathews, Pat Britt and Peace.
Unfortunately, Callum Currie is among the top guns who will not be at Redan this year.
He will go from a highly successful season with Southern Districts in the Northern Territory to original home club Casterton Sandford – joining another Redan teammate Gus Cleary.
Peace said Redan was going to have to be patient.
As well as the loss of the likes of Damien Horbury, Tom Lamb, Mitch Phelps Nick Willox and Currie, Redan will most likely have to deal with the absence of Nathan Horbury.
The reigning Henderson Medallist has made an impressive start with Geelong in the VFL, which means he might be rarely seen around the Den. And with rrecuits light on, that will not make it any easier.
REDAN FACT FILE
Coach: Brendan Peace (second year) playing
Home and away: fourth (semi-finalist)
12 wins, 4 losses
Best and fairest: Nathan Horbury
Dan Colbert (Barwon Heads, BFL)
Matt Coon (Maryborough, BFL)
Aaron Gercovich (Rokewood-Corindhap, CHFL)
Tanner Hamilton (Maryborough, BFL)
Thomas Bryans (Bell Park, GFL)
Gus Cleary (Casterton, WBFL) *North Ballarat VFL listed 2017
Callum Currie (Casterton WBFL)
Kali Dawborn (Uni Blacks, VAFA)
Nick Hausler (Sebastopol) *North Ballarat VFL listed 2017
Damien Horbury (Barwon Heads, GDFL)
Tom Lamb (Barham-Koondrook, CMFL)
Mitch Phelps (Barwon Heads, BFL)
Brenton Riordan (Katandra, PDFL)
Tom Schnerring (Ballarat) *North Ballarat VFL listed 2017/Williamstown VFL listed 2018
Ryan Waight (Bungaree, CHFL)
Dan Watson (Cobden, HFL)
Josh Webster (Southern Mallee Giants, WFL) *North Ballarat VFL listed 2017
Nick Willox (Learmonth, CHFL)
2018 VFL LISTED PLAYERS
Nathan Horbury (Geelong)