The Central Coast Mariners are back in Australia today after finishing our week-long tour of Vanuatu.
Competing in the Friendship Cup with local side Ifira Blackbird, the Vanuatu National Team and a Vanuatu development squad, the Mariners finished second in the rankings after three exhibition matches on what proved to be difficult pitch conditions.
Heavy rainfall and humidity meant the young squad experienced conditions unlike anything they had seen before.
The trip acted as the perfect opportunity to give everyone in the squad valuable minutes before the commencement of the A-League season, with head coach Nick Montgomery changing the squad for each of the matches.
It was a brilliant tour and a great experience for the side, with the Mariners thanking Vanuatu for their hospitality over the seven day stay.
During our time in the country the touring party were also able to visit many local villages, including the birthplace of Mariners centre defender and Vanuatu’s national team captain Brian Kaltak.
We now return to Australia with just over a fortnight before the league kicks back off, with the side keen to continue their preparations ahead of a massive December of A-League football on the Central Coast.