Bojic back for Central Coast

After missing his first game of the season last week, Central Coast Mariners defender Pedj Bojic returns for a crunch Hyundai A-League match against Queensland at Bluetongue Stadium in Gosford on Saturday night.

After missing his first game of the season last week, Central Coast Mariners defender Pedj Bojic returns for a crunch Hyundai A-League match against Queensland at Bluetongue Stadium in Gosford on Saturday night.

After an outstanding start to his debut season in the national competition, Bojic missed last week's 2-2 draw against Perth on suspension and the Mariners missed his contribution from the defence.

But with regular central defender Nigel Boogaard out, the return of Bojic comes at the perfect time for Mariners coach Lawrie McKinna.

Bojic will play alongside Mariners skipper Alex Wilkinson in the centre of defence. The pair will be desperate to stop the potent Roar attack.

Bojic has played the majority of the season at left back and cannot wait for a return to his preferred position.

"It (central defence) is my natural position," he said.

"I've been happy with my form at left back but I like playing in the centre and winning tackles and getting stuck in. This is a massive game for us."

After spending three years playing in the lower leagues in England, Bojic returned to Australia desperate for a start in the Hyundai A-League.

The Mariners gave him a chance and he has not let the club down.

Bojic has been one of the season's most consistent performers.

"Pedj has been great all year, very consistent," McKinna said.

"He is a natural central defender so he'll slot in and do a job for us with Wilko."

Meanwhile, McKinna expects strikers Dylan Macallister and Matt Simon to play despite the pair battling injuries this week.

Macallister has a corked calf, while Simon is still being troubled by a knee injury sustained against Melbourne two weeks ago.

The fourth-placed Mariners can leapfrog the Roar into third place with a win.