Lions await fresh troops

Jun. 16, 2004

The Metro Lions have posted ones across the board - one win, one loss and one tie in their first three starts. And the brass of the Scarborough-based Canadian Professional Soccer League (CPSL) squad is rather proud of that record.

Especially since the Lions have yet to field their best lineup.

The squad, which plays its home games at Birchmount Stadium, has three players on its roster that also represent their respective national teams.

They are forward Hayden Fitzwilliams and midfielders Darryl Gomez and Caswain Mason. All three have been recently helping out their national teams in their quests to qualify for the 2006 World Cup.

Fitzwilliams plays for Trinidad and Tobago, Gomez toils for the St. Kitts national side while Mason suits up for St. Vincent and Grenadines.

All three of these players are expected to miss two more games with the Lions before rejoining the squad next week.

The local squad has also being playing without another individual expected to play a key role this season, Romanian import Gabriel Salustius. He's waiting for some paperwork to be completed - an international player transfer - before suiting up for the Lions.

"When these four guys come back, we're going to be really strong," said Lions' president and CEO Goran Zubic.

The Lions kicked off their 2004 regular season campaign with a 1-1 road tie against the Hamilton Thunder on May 27.

The local squad was then edged 2-1 by the host Brampton Hitmen on June 6.

The Lions then entertained the expansion Border Stars from Windsor in their home opener this past Sunday. The host squad overcame a 2-1 second-half deficit and posted a 3-2 triumph.

"That was a huge win for us," Zubic said.

The Lions are back in action on Friday with a road game against London City. The club will then return home and prepare for a Sunday match against the visiting North York Astros.

The opening kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m.

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