Central Coast Mariners have been defeated 1-nil by Newcastle Jets in round 3 of the Hyundai A-League played at Ausgrid Stadium, Broadmeadow this evening.
Central Coast Mariners have been defeated 1-nil by Newcastle Jets in round 3 of the Hyundai A-League played at Ausgrid Stadium this evening.
Jeremy Brockie-s 25th minute strike for the Jets was all that separated the two sides, with the home team enjoying the better of the play in the opening stanza while the Mariners responded with a more purposeful effort in the second 45.
Mariners Head Coach Graham Arnold was understandably disappointed with the outcome of the match, however stressed that his team needed to keep focused on the “big picture” that is the 2011/12 Hyundai A-League season.
“We didn-t turn up at the start of the game, but you make your own luck and that starts with a lot of hard work on the training field,” Arnold said.
“Tomorrow we-ll do recovery, Tuesday is off, and we-ll start again Wednesday.”
“In the second half I thought we created enough chances to win it.”
Despite the expectation leading into the F3 Derby, the game began at a relatively insipid pace. Michael McGlinchey-s strong 7th minute strike was the first and only real action of the opening 15 minutes of play.
On 18 minutes, the Jets found space and broke purposefully through Labinot Haliti. Haliti hit a low drive at Mariners shot stopper Mathew Ryan, with the 19-year-old responding sharply to block the ball away.
Just five minutes later the Mariners had one their best chances of the opening stanza. A curling free kick from Oliver Bozanic sent Ben Kennedy sprawling to his right, with the Newcastle custodian just able to palm the accurate in-swinger to safety.
Two minutes later the Jets would take the lead. Picking up the ball in the final third, Brockie showed good ability to weave his way through the Mariners defence before sending a precise chip into the back of the net.
On 34 minutes, the Yellow and Navy almost had the equaliser their travelling support craved. Tarek Elrich-s error inside the box fell to Daniel McBreen, whose shot on the turn just whisked past Kennedy-s left post.
Shortly after the interval Arnold opted to introduce Bernie Ibini to the game, and the attackers pace visibly lifted the Mariners side.
Indeed, it was Ibini who helped spark a number of Mariners chances in the second stanza, with McBreen, Matt Simon and the 2011 Qantas Young Socceroo himself all testing the Newcastle number one as the clock wound down.
Arnold reserved special praise for the speedy youngster.
“Bernie did exceptionally well when he came on,” he said. “Today we got a good 45 minutes out of him.”
Unfortunately for Central Coast, however, their vastly improved second half performance would not be rewarded with an equaliser at Ausgrid Stadium.
The Mariners- next match is against Perth Glory at Bluetongue Stadium, Gosford, on Saturday 29 October.
Newcastle Jets 1 (Brockie 25-)
Central Coast Mariners 0
Newcastle Jets: 1. Ben KENNEDY (gk), 4. Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY, 5. Tiago CALVANO, 6. Ben KANTAROVSKI, 7. Kasey WEHRMAN (c), 8. Jeremy BROCKIE, 10. Ruben ZADKOVICH, 11. Tarek ELRICH, 13. Sung-Hwan BYUN, 14. Labinot HALITI, 23. Ryan GRIFFITHS
Substitutes: 2. Taylor REGAN, 18. Marko JESIC, 19. Matthew NASH (gk), 22. Ali ABBAS
Central Coast Mariners: 1. Mathew RYAN (gk), 2. Daniel MCBREEN, 3. Joshua ROSE, 4. Pedj BOJIC, 5. Brad PORTER, 6. Patrick ZWAANSWIJK (c), 8. Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 10. Adriano PELLEGRINO, 11. Oliver BOZANIC, 14. Michael MCGLINCHEY, 19. Matthew SIMON
Substitutes: 9. Bernie IBINI, 12. Troy HEARFIELD, 20. Justin PASFIELD (gk), 23. Adam Kwasnik
Referee: Jarred GILLETT
Crowd: 14,421 at Ausgrid Stadium