Arnie promises more

Central Coast coach Graham Arnold doubts his side is ready to foot it with A-League pace-setters Brisbane and Adelaide just yet but there is no doubting the Mariners are enjoying a purple patch of form at the midway point of the campaign.

Central Coast coach Graham Arnold doubts his side is ready to foot it with A-League pace-setters Brisbane and Adelaide just yet but there is no doubting the Mariners are enjoying a purple patch of form at the midway point of the campaign.

Saturday's 3-0 win away to Wellington Phoenix was Central Coast's first victory at Westpac Stadium since October 2007 and came courtesy of a Josh Rose double and a late strike by former Phoenix player Adam Kwasnik.

The win, which kept them in third place on the table, was the sixth in eight games for the Mariners with the last three all coming away from home.

"I can see us every week getting better and better and better," Arnold said.

"I think there's still a lot of improvement left."

"If there is one negative about tonight's game it's in front of goal. It could have been 3-0, game over, dead and buried (by half-time) and it was still 1-0. We kept them in it."

Young New Zealander Michael McGlinchey, who has been offered a new deal by the club, had another good game down the right flank and had a glorious chance to opening the scoring in the 11th minute.

Then Daniel McBreen's header was punched away by Wellington keeper Mark Paston before Rose bagged the first of his brace to open the scoring in the 17th minute.

In the second half Patrick Zwaanswijk had a header disallowed for offside and Kwasnik forced another save from Paston before Rose made another strong run into the box and rifled his shot low past the Phoenix keeper. Kwasnik's third iced the victory.

"It was nice to get a couple of goals tonight," Rose said.

"But the most important thing was the three points."

"To be fair I've been a bit disappointed with my performances over the last few weeks. Arnie has been giving me a few tips on how I can improve and telling me to get forward a bit more. So it was nice tonight to get that bit of space and get a couple of goals."

Arnold felt it was simply good old-fashioned hard work that had got his team firing so well.

After spending the early part of the season focusing on defence, the work done on the attacking formation - particularly the diamond structure in midfield - was now reaping dividends.

"The mentality of this playing group is fantastic. We've got no stars. I don't want any stars," he added.

"We've just got blokes who are prepared to go out there and work for 90 minutes and carry out the game plan and work for each other. The confidence is growing."

The Phoenix were not without their chances though, with Simon Elliott and Chris Greenacre both rattling the woodwork.

But it was a disappointing night for the home side, who suffered back-to-back losses at Westpac Stadium for the first time.

Arnold however, felt it would be dangerous to write off Ricki Herbert's side, who travel to Newcastle next week.

"I think they are going through a rough patch," the Mariners boss said.

"For a couple of the players there might be a bit of a World Cup hangover. It's not easy. Leo (Bertos) and (Ben) Sigmund and Elliott even and Tim Brown they've come off the back of a World Cup and they have been playing pretty much straight for 12 months which is new to them."

"But when you've got a coach like Ricki Herbert it's a matter of time before they get things right. I would hate to be their next opponent. They were unlucky tonight."