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Dec 17, 2010   |  7:11PM AET

Simon sets sights on Gold Coast goals

Simon sets sights on Gold Coast goals

He’s scored three goals in five matches against Gold Coast United, and now, Mariners striker Matt Simon has his eye on even more success in the “Battle of the Beaches”, when the two sides clash at Skilled Park on Sunday afternoon.

He-s scored three goals in five matches against Gold Coast United, and now, Mariners striker Matt Simon has his eye on even more success in the “Battle of the Beaches”, when the two sides clash at Skilled Park on Sunday afternoon.

Simon has been ever present in Graham Arnold-s starting eleven this campaign and has already netted six goals, just one shy of his overall tally in 2009/10.

“My confidence is high at the moment and it-s always nice to play week in-week out but the pressure is definitely there to keep performing,” said Simon.

“Macca (Daniel McBreen), Kwas (Adam Kwasnik), and even (Nik) Mrdja coming back from injury means the pressure is definitely on so I have to keep performing week in-week out and hopefully I will keep my spot.”

Equalling last year-s tally on Sunday, would be extra special to the Wyoming and East Gosford junior.

“Yeah it would definitely be nice. My old man is from up there so he will be there watching and it would be good to score in front of him to keep the tally ticking over,” Simon said.

The clash is not only important on a personal level, but with just three points separating the two sides, and goal difference all square, Simon knows how vital victory could prove in the overall scheme of the season.

“It-s always good doing up to the Gold Coast, it-s a pretty big game for us, they-re third on the ladder and we-re fourth so hopefully we can close that gap and get the three points on Sunday.

“It-s going to be huge to determine the final positions at the end of the season and they-ve beaten us once at home this year and we had a draw up there the first time around so hopefully we can get the points up there this time and get us closer to them on the ladder,” said Simon.

An extra incentive for both teams to perform will be the likelihood of a club record crowd at Skilled Park, after Gold Coast United-s gesture to open the gates to thank Football Federation Australia Chairman Frank Lowy and CEO Ben Buckley for their effort in attempting to bring the 2022 FIFA World Cup to Australia.

“I-ve heard (Gold Coast United owner) Clive (Palmer) has opened up the gates there so it will be nice to play in front of a big crowd at that stadium. It-s probably one of the best stadiums in Australia so hopefully they can get around the ten thousand mark there and make some noise,” said Simon.

Those hopes appear to have already been surpassed, with around 20-thousand tickets already snapped up.

The Central Coast Mariners next match of the Hyundai A-League 2010/11 season will be against Gold Coast United this Sunday, 19 December at Skilled Park. Kick-off is at 4:00pm QST (5:00pm AEDT) and entry is FREE.