Monty’s Midweek Update: Round 18

Central Coast Mariners head coach Nick Montgomery is pleased with his side’s performance over in Perth, proud of the effort shown. 

This coming after what was a difficult trip out West, fighting against the long flight, time difference and a delayed match to come away with a point.

“It’s quite a long way to travel obviously with the time difference and stuff as well. It’s never an easy trip and, under the circumstances, the stadium, the pitch and all that stuff, it’s a difficult trip,” Montgomery said.  

“I thought the whole game we were incredibly strong. 70% possession, 21 Shots, 17 corners, that tells its own story. But stats don’t win games.

“As I said after the game, what wins the game is putting the ball in the back of the net and the first half we weren’t clinical.”

The head coach disappointed to not come away with the three points after a dominant display, but extremely proud of the effort from the whole squad. 

“We had many chances to put the game to bed within the first 15 minutes. We didn’t do that and football can bite you on the backside. It’s just one counter attack that ends up with a corner and a weak free kick on the edge of the box,” he said.

“We go one nil down but it’s not like we haven’t been there before. The boys continued to create chance after chance. Then to go two nil down was massively against the run of play but I always thought we could get back in the game and win it.”

Two Jason Cummings penalties drew the scores level, with the Mariners pushing for victory. Montgomery believing that a winner would have been deserved, with it ultimately not coming. 

“Unfortunately, we hit the crossbar and the post towards the end, and we had numerous opportunities to win the game that went begging,” he said. 

“I’m really proud of the effort from the boys but. It was disappointing not to get three points but we move on now to Wellington on Friday.”

The match also marking the return of Moresche, with the forward playing his first football match in nine months. The striker playing over 20 minutes in the draw, looking fit and strong throughout. 

“I thought he was outstanding for someone that’s been out for the length of time he has been, to come back and give us the energy and to look like he has not been out. You know, he’s obviously a bit rusty,” he said. 

“He needs gametime, but that’s going to come. So, I think that’s a big tick from Moresche and the boys are just delighted to have him back.”