Mariners fall to Newcastle in season-opening #F3Derby


Despite a goal to Spanish striker, Asdrubal in the fifth minute of play, the Central Coast Mariners have fallen to a clinical Newcastle Jets side at home in the opening round of the Hyundai A-League.

Central Coast Mariners 1 (Asdrubal 5’) Newcastle Jets 5 (O’Donovan 9’, 27’, 38’, Champness 81’, Petratos 90’)

The run down

Former Mariner, Roy O’Donovan left Gosford with a hat-trick to his name alongside goals to Dimitri Petratos and Joey Champness at Central Coast Stadium.

In the highly anticipated opening match for the Hyundai A-League 2017/18 season, the Central Coast Mariners and Newcastle Jets battled it out for pride and three points at Central Coast Stadium.

The legendary #F3Derby did not disappoint. Gosford was buzzing with energy, as 12,044 Jets and Mariners fans gathered to watch both teams debut newly revitalised squads.

The high-octane energy that would define the first half became apparent almost immediately. In under 30 seconds, a Newcastle challenge on Asdrubal sent the Spanish striker flying, and the Mariners took the first of a series of free kicks in the first half.

Central Coast took the reins in the opening minutes, starving the Jets of possession and putting in a number of goal-scoring chances.

A floating ball over the box found Alan Baro, who sent a strong head into the top right corner, giving Duncan cause to stretch to save the scoreline. Danny De Silva and Kwabena Appiah also created notable difficulties for the visitors, the speedy forwards causing havoc amongst the Newcastle defence for the opening flurry of chances to the home side.

A corner from Hiariej in the fifth minute landed in a group of Mariners inside the box, where a quick pass from McGing allowed Asdrubal to sink the first goal of the match and put the home team 1-0 up.

The Mariners lead was unfortunately short-lived. Minor contact from Baro on Roy O’Donovan gave referee Jonathon Barreiro cause to give a penalty to the visiting Team in extremely controversial circumstances.  

O’ Donovan made no mistake with the penalty in the 9th minute. 

Stepping up to win back the lead, the Mariners attacking force worked tirelessly to create chance after chance for the home side, but they just couldn’t deliver that final pass.

Bolstered by their penalty success, Newcastle were able to regain their rhythm, and had an opportunity in the 22nd minute that was denied by an outstanding Tom Glover save.

Only minutes later, a cool and collected long pass from Vargas found Petratos and Nabbout on the left wing, where teamwork and a short pass to O’Donovan in the 18-yard box put the Jets ahead 2-1 in the 27th minute.

A perfectly weighted cross from Nabbout on the left wing found O’Donovan just outside the six-yard box in the 38th minute. A decisive header from the Newcastle number 9 went just past Glover’s outstretched hands to put the Jets up 3-1 before half time.

A scurry of heated activity in the three minutes of added time saw the rivalry between the two teams reach a peak, with yellow cards awarded to Daniel Georgievski, Steven Ugarkavic and Josh Rose before the break.

Both teams returned from the sheds with a more measured approach, after the intense nature of the first half, the Mariners looked to pace themselves, building momentum from the back to create plenty of attacking chances.

Towards the backend of  the second half Connor Pain played a role in the Central Coast’s attacking efforts, pushing up the left wing to create opportunities. A cross from Pain slid perfectly across the goal, but just missed final contact from Asdrubal.

Appiah again stood out for the Mariners attack, his pace and tenacity causing problems for Newcastle defender, Nikolai Toppor-Stanley.

Another yellow card was awarded to the Newcastle Jets, this time to Andrew Nabbout, for an illegal challenge in the air that sent Jake McGing to the ground.

After an outstanding showing from Appiah, Paul Okon substituted speed for speed, putting Buhagiar in for Appiah in the 67th minute.

Substitutes Bingham and Buhagiar made an immediate impact on the game, both with shots on goal that came achingly close to doubling the Mariners’ tally. A very sharp save from Duncan was the only thing that prevented Buhagiar from putting a crushing shot into the top corner.

After seemingly endless chances for both teams, Newcastle managed to score again, with a goal for debutant, Joseph Champness to make it 4-1.

In the dying moments of the game, an assist from O’Donovan and some fast footwork from Petratos put the scoreline 5-1 in favour of the Jets.

Full focus now turns to an away trip to Western Sydney Wanderers next Saturday night at Spotless Stadium.


5’ ASDRUBAL (1-0):  An expertly taken corner from Hiariej floated in front of the home team’s goal, where Spanish striker Asdrubal was waiting to strike, using his upper thigh to send the ball to the back of the net and make the first mark on the scoresheet.

9’ O’DONOVAN GOAL(1-1): Roy O’Donovan stepped up to the penalty spot for the Jets, with a direct strike giving Glover no chance.  

27’ O’DONOVAN GOAL (1-2): Vargas, Petratos and Nabbout all had a hand in putting the ball to O’Donovan in front of goal, and the Irishman doubled his tally.

38’ O’DONOVAN GOAL (1-3): A sharp cross from Nabbout created the perfect opportunity for O’Donovan to head the ball into the back of the net.

81’ CHAMPNESS GOAL (1-4): Barely minutes after coming onto the pitch, substitute Joseph Champness capitalised on a cross from O’Donovan and dodged the Central Coast defence to make his mark.

90’ PETRATOS GOAL (1-5) Petratos again proved to be a dangerous attacking force, with a final strike that claimed the game for the Newcastle Jets.

Paolo in the press

“I don’t think that we played bad tonight I just thing that in key moments of the game we didn’t handle it well and unfortunately that resulted in goals against us,” Okon said. “The goal just before half time was maybe the killer, mentally that’s tough.

“In the second half we had most of the ball, they sat back and waited for a mistake and hit us on the counter. It’s a disappointing result, not a great start but there’s 26 games to go. We will analyse it, be critical of it as we often are and move on to next week.

“Right now it’s hard to see any positives because we’ve lost. We’ve lost a derby by a big score. We congratulate the Jets and we move on.
“Our final pass wasn’t what it could have been, but I’m not going to be critical of the players who didn’t stop trying. Our energy was there, our intentions were good but it’s not good enough to concede five goals.

“We know Roy can score goals, he scored a number of goals for this football club. We never planned for Roy to score a hat-trick in the first half, he took his goals well and one was a pen.

“One area that we were really poor tonight was winning second balls. Kantarovski and Ugarkovic won nearly everything that dropped down to them. We were a bit too stretched and the longer balls from Topor-Stanley and Boogaard caused us a few issues there.

“I don’t think lifting the players for next week will be an issue. We need to look at it and make sure we improve on it. There’s more games to come and we’re not going to lose our confidence or lose belief we will continue to work and prepare as best as we can for a tough away trip to the Wanderers next week.

Central Coast Mariners: 18.Tom GLOVER (gk), 3.Josh ROSE, 5.Antony GOLEC (77’ 16.Liam ROSE), 6.Tom HIARIEJ, 9.ASDRUBAL (77’ 17.Josh BINGHAM), 10.Danny De SILVA, 11.Connor PAIN, 13.Kwabena APPIAH (67’ 12.Trent BUHAGIAR), 15.Alan BARO, 23.Wout BRAMA

Unused substitutes: 1.Ben KENNEDY,14.Adam BERRY,

Yellow cards: 3. Josh ROSE

Newcastle Jets: 1.Jack DUNCAN (gk), 4.Nigel BOOGAARD, 5.Ben KANTAROVSKI (84’ 16.Nicholas COWBURN), 6.Steve UGARKOVIC, 7.Dimitri PETRATOS, 8.Ronald VARGAS (59’ 10.Wayne BROWN) 9.Roy O’DONOVAN, 12.Ivan VUJICA, 15.Andrew NABBOUT (77’ 24.Joseph CHAMPNESS), 17.Daniel GEORGIEVSKI 44. Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY

Unused substitutes: 20.Glen MOSS (gk), 22.Lachlan JACKSON,

Yellow cards: 17. Daniel GEORGIEVSK, 6. Steven UGARKOVIC, 15. Andrew NABBOUT

Saturday, 7 October 2017
Central Coast Stadium, Gosford
Central Coast Mariners vs. Newcastle Jets