McBreen keen for one last shot at ‘the Bhoys’

Central Coast Mariners striker Daniel McBreen is no stranger to playing Celtic FC. During his time with Falkirk in the Scottish Premier League, McBreen challenged ‘the Hoops’ on numerous occasions.

In 2009, Central Coast Mariners attacker Daniel McBreen returned to Australia having successfully plied his trade in Europe for seven seasons.

Spells in Romania and England were separated by two fruitful campaigns at Falkirk in the Scottish Premier League – a club that at the time were punching well above their weight in Scotland-s top flight.

Indeed, having played in front of Celtic-s famed Parkhead faithful three times during his stay with ‘the Bairns-, McBreen is better placed than most to elaborate on how significant it will be to play the Glasgow giants in Australia – and he-s buoyed to beat ‘the Bhoys-, too.

“From memory, two of the times we played at Parkhead we were actually in the lead and ended up being beaten in the final 15 minutes,” McBreen said.

“But that just shows the character of their club. Their players never give in because whether home or away, their support is so passionate and so loud that they just keep urging them on.

“That-s what I-m expecting when we play them at ANZ Stadium (on Saturday 2 July), but of course it-d be nice to get one back for those losses in Scotland.”

A return of a goal every three games ensured McBreen was a consistent contributor to the Falkirk cause during his stay with the club, however the striker fondly recollects pitting wits with certain Celtic players.

Former ‘Hoops- defender Bobo Balde and sharp Polish marksman Maciej Zurawski were two players who left a lasting impression on the tall Mariners gun.

“Big Bobo Balde, he was quality,” McBreen recalled. “He could have played in the English Premier League easy.

“I remember Maciej Zurawski well too. One day he scored the winner against us and they played his theme song in the stadium – the crowd were so loud!

“We were down but at the same time you couldn-t help but look up at the fans going crazy and appreciate it.”

At 34, the Mariners clash with Celtic may prove to be McBreen-s last opportunity to topple ‘the Bhoys-, and he said that come game day every Mariners player would be ready to fire.

Mariners coaching staff are currently gearing the teams- preseason towards the Celtic clash, before reassessing prior to the Hyundai A-League-s kick-off in October.

“Obviously Michael McGlinchey played at Celtic when he was younger so he-ll be keen to have a big game, but generally, a big crowd, a big team, it-s what the boys want.”

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