Cultural change motivates Mariners comeback


Central Coast Mariners winger Connor Pain attributed his new side’s astonishing turnaround against Perth Glory to an honest assessment of the team’s identity.

The Mariners went into the nib Stadium change rooms three goals down and would become just the fifth team in Hyundai A-League history to resurrect a three goal deficit (three of those five teams have been the Mariners).

It’s the fighting spirit that the Mariners have always been admired for and a welcomed turnaround to the Yellow & Navy faithful who nervously watched on until midnight.

Those who turned off the television at half time can be forgiven but those who believed and tuned in until the wee hours of Sunday morning were rewarded with one of the greatest comebacks in recent Hyundai A-League history.

A second half brace to Roy O’Donovan, close range goal to Blake Powell and man of the match performance by Connor Pain proved enough for the Mariners to return to the Central Coast from Perth with a well-earned point.

Pain credited a desire to restore the side’s character under new coach Paul Okon that sparked the remarkable response.

SUMMARY: Gutsy Mariners fight to earn point in six goal thriller

“We just said (at half-time) that we don’t want to be that club from last year,” Pain told Fox Sports.

“We’ve got some new players with a new gaffer and a new style and we just wanted to make amends.

“I think we’re making inroads to doing that so we’ve just got to keep it up.

“To go into the sheds at 3-0 down we were a bit worried at what was to happen but we came out a different team.

“I think that’s an absolute credit to the lads. That’s what we’ve got to change at Central Coast and that’s what we’ve got to make better.

“I thought we were absolutely fantastic,” Pain said.