No joy for Mariners against red-hot Roar

Two goals inside the first ten minutes to Costa Rican import Jean Carlos Solorzano have helped the Brisbane Roar to a 5-1 victory over the Central Coast Mariners in tonight’s Hyundai A-League week 16 encounter. A second half strike to Adam Kwasnik, his fifth of the campaign foreshadowed a comeback that didn’t quite come off for the Yellow and Navy.

Two goals inside the first ten minutes to Costa Rican import Jean Carlos Solorzano have helped the Brisbane Roar to a 5-1 victory over the Central Coast Mariners in tonight-s Hyundai A-League week 16 encounter. A second half strike to Adam Kwasnik, his fifth of the campaign foreshadowed a comeback that didn-t quite come off for the Yellow and Navy.

As dusk settled on Bluetongue Stadium, Graham Arnold reflected on what might have been, but is experienced enough to know that the world of football is never an easy ride.

“Brisbane were red hot,” said Arnold.

“We tried to change things today by playing with three strikers, and an extra midfielder to put pressure further up the field and close down the spaces because of Brisbane-s mobility.

“I thought in the first ten minutes we started very flat, and sloppy. Going 2-nil down just killed our confidence. It-s a bad day at the office and for me it-s about how we respond to that.

“I said to the boys in the dressing room we have days like that. The good thing is now we can get back on the training field for a full week for the first time in about a month, and work on things there.”

Facing their third competitive match in a week, Arnold opted to make some changes to refresh his side. Promising defender Trent Sainsbury earned a second cap, after an encouraging performance in Wednesday-s night derby against Newcastle. The Mariners started with a 4-2-3-1 formation in an effort to capitalize on the speed of their two young wingers.

Brisbane travelled to Bluetongue with the reputation being the A-League-s form side, and aware of talent the Roar front men possessed, the Mariners were understandably keen to make their presence felt early. The task fell, to one of the Mariners- lightest players, Oliver Bozanic who let Brisbane ‘keeper Michael Theoklitos know that he was in a contest.

The break spurred the Roar into action, who took the game to their hosts. The Mariners looked like they had weathered the early onslaught comfortably, but in the 8th minute that all changed. Mitch Nichols had a snap-shot that forced youngster Mathew Ryan into a reflex save. Due to the speed and power in the shot, the ball bounced off the chest of the ‘keeper into the path of Solorzano. The Costa Rican product had no trouble slotting the ball home.

The Mariners barely had time to draw breath before Solorzano was at it again. The marksman was the beneficiary of some strong lead up work from out-wide, and drove home from just outside the box to double both his and the Roar-s lead.

Though obviously subdued by the turn of events, the Central Coast Mariners were still determined to push forward in an effort to get themselves back into the match. It was the youngsters leading from the front. Mustafa Amini, who continues to grow in confidence every time he takes the field, continued to deliver those passes that gave the receiver a chance to turn into space. While Bozanic was in everything, linking up with fellow left-sided player Joshua Rose in a desperate attempt to net a reply for the home side.

Brisbane was in a menacing mood, and in the 24th minute they netted their third goal of the afternoon. Mitch Nichols and Kosta Barbarouses combined in an interchange of passes that split the Mariners defence and allowed Nichols to drive home past a hapless Ryan.

In a half where there were very few clear-cut chances for the home side, the best fell arguably to Matt Simon who couldn-t quite control a pass from defender, Alex Wilkinson. The skipper showed that his passing game continues to develop every match under the tutelage of the experienced Patrick Zwaanswijk.

Adam Kwasnik was introduced into the game immediately following the resumption of play, and the man who has had a golden touch in recent weeks announced his arrival forcing a corner. Not content with that contribution Kwasnik went one better when he netted the Mariners opener.

An intelligent ball from Wilkinson allowed the enigmatic poacher to run on to a ball, and head doggedly for the box. Nothing was going to get in Kwasnik-s way, and a run from Bozanic distracted the Brisbane defence at the pivotal moment allowing the striker to drive home his 5th goal of the campaign.

Brisbane custodian Theoklitos protested heavily but to no avail, earning himself a caution in the protest. The goal was the perfect revitalizing tonic for the Mariners who lifted the tempo noticeably, despite the heavy ground conditions.

Inspired by the feats of the substitute, Ryan showed again why he is rated such a promising talent. He gained generous applause from the diehards, when he leapt acrobatically to deny Matt McKay in the 58th minute.

The Mariners kept pressing forward in search for a second goal that would have meant a tricky last quarter of the match for the visitors, but they were unable to get it. Kwasnik attempted to sneak a shot home, but referee Ryan Shepheard was having none of it.

Not content with a two-goal buffer, Thomas Broich was able to ride a challenge from Trent Sainsbury, before providing a cross to Reinaldo. A diving Ryan got a touch on the ball, but Reinaldo was able to drive it home from two yards.

An Alex Wilkinson own goal completed the scoring a minute later. The captain showed great commitment to try and block the cross getting the danger man Reinaldo, but unfortunately couldn-t put the ball wide.

Compounding the Mariners striking woes, Daniel McBreen was sent off in stoppage time for a second bookable offence.

A six-day break in fixtures provides some much needed respite for Graham Arnold-s charges after a torrid period in their season.

The coach for one is looking forward to it.

“We-ve got Sydney next weekend here, and we-ve just got to get on with it.”

The Central Coast Mariners continue their 2010/11 campaign against Sydney FC next Saturday, 4 December at Bluetongue Stadium, Gosford. Kick-off is at 7:00pm and tickets are available online at or by phoning 132 849.

Match Details

Central Coast Mariners 1 (Kwasnik 50-)
Brisbane Roar 5 (Solorzano 8-, 10-, Nichols 24, Reinaldo 87-, Wikinson 89- (og))

Central Coast Mariners: 20. Mathew RYAN (gk), 3. Joshua ROSE, 6. Patrick ZWAANSWIJK, 7. John HUTCHINSON, 8. Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 11. Oliver BOZANIC, 14. Michael McGLINCHEY, 16. Trent SAINSBURY, (17. Chris DOIG 89-) 18. Alex WILKINSON (C), 19. Matt SIMON, (2. Daniel McBREEN 46-), 22. Mustafa AMINI (23. Adam KWASNIK 46-).

Subs not Used: 30. Paul HENDERSON (gk).

Yellow Cards: Wilkinson 74-
Red Cards: McBreen 90+2-

Brisbane Roar: 1. Michael THEOKLITOS (gk), 2. Matthew SMITH, 3. Luke DEVERE, 5. Ivan FRANJIC, 6. Erik PAARTALU, 7. Kosta BARBAROUSES, 9. Jean Carlos SOLORZANO, (11. REINALDO 63-), 15. Matt McKAY (C), 17. Mitchell NICHOLS, (8. Massimo MURDOCCA 72-), 22. Thomas BROICH, (12. Matthew MUNDY 89-), 23. Milan SUSAK.

Subs not Used: 20. Andrew REDMAYNE (gk).

Yellow Cards: Theoklitos 50-, Franjic 61-, Broich 65-
Red Cards: None

Referee: Ryan SHEPHEARD
Crowd: 5,858 at Bluetongue Stadium, Gosford.