Two of the Brisbane Lions emerging stars, ruckman Archie Smith and midfielder Rhys Mathieson, have re-committed to the Club until the end of 2021.
Both said the Lions was home and they looked forward to continuing their career at the Gabba.
“I couldn’t picture myself in other colours,” Mathieson told lions.com.au.
“It’s actually a big relief so I can just get on playing the season now.”
Smith, who has been with the Lions since 2014, agreed.
“I’m very excited, super relieved, I’m very lucky this journey gets to continue for me,” Smith said.
“I love everyone under this roof. Not just the playing staff but the coaches. I have a great relationship with people up on Level 5 [administration] as well.”
22-year-old Mathieson came to the Lions in 2015, selected with the Lions 39th pick at the draft. Since then he has played 42 games and kicked 22 goals.
A fan favourite, he is known for his passion on field and has played all five games for the Lions this year.
General Manager of Football David Noble said coaching staff had been impressed by Mathieson’s growth across the past few years.
“Rhys shows terrific drive to constantly get better and challenge himself at AFL level,” Noble said.
“He embraces our values and brings a level of passion to our team which is infectious and engaging.
“As he continues to grow, we look forward to his next level of development at our Club.”
Unfortunately Mathieson will miss the next one to two games due to a hamstring complaint.
Smith, who came to the Lions after a long history was basketball, has seen his game
strengthen each season.
The 23-year-old has played nine AFL games and has been in good form for the Club’s NEAFL team in 2019.
“Archie is a powerful athlete who has advanced his skills and level of athleticism over this pre-season particularly,” Noble said.
“His transition to becoming a regular AFL player took huge steps forward over the last few months.
“Both his power and level of competitiveness are two areas we love about his game and look forward to his continued progression at our Club.”
The Lions AFL and NEAFL sides meet the Gold Coast SUNS at Metricon this Saturday 27 April