Bring on Adelaide, says Arnold
Central Coast coach Graham Arnold is already looking forward to the Mariners crucial clash with Adelaide after watching his team score two second-half goals to share the points in a thriller against Sydney FC at Gosford on Sunday.
Central Coast coach Graham Arnold is already looking forward to the Mariners crucial clash with Adelaide after watching his team score two second half goals to share the points in a thriller against Sydney FC at Gosford on Sunday.
Arnold admitted his players were 'out on their feet' after a heavy schedule in the last two weeks.
The Mariners coach was full of praise for his troops after the team scored two second-half goals to secure a 2-2 draw in front of 10,546 supporters at Bluetongue Stadium.
Patricio Perez was the chief destroyer, scoring one and setting up the second in his best performance for the club.
The win sees the Mariners move one point clear of Adelaide in second spot with the two teams facing off in South Australia on Saturday night.
"I don't think we had our legs in the first half," Arnold said after Sydney led 2-0 at the break.
"But the character in this team is unbelievable. They were out on their feet after playing five games in 14 days, including a trip to Perth (on Wednesday)."
"To be 2-0 down any lesser team would have lost that match and started thinking about next week."
"I congratulated them on that performance."
While Perez was at this scheming best, Arnold can also take plenty of credit for the win after changing his formation at half-time.
He put Daniel McBreen on up front and played with three strikers and only three in defence in a bid to get something from the game.
Sydney FC captain Terry McFlynn knew the Mariners would come out hard in the second half.
The result all but ends any hope Sydney had of reaching the finals.
"We've got the Asian Champions League to look forward to," McFlynn said.
"We'll keep going to the end. Full credit to Central Coast, they deserve to be up there."
"We knew they would throw the kitchen sink at us in the second half. They just kept battling away."