'Family-like' bond driving Mariners' defensive duo
Central Coast defender Antony Golec has credited a ‘family-like’ relationship with central-defensive partner Alan Baro as the catalyst for their solid performances so far this season.
Golec has started in all 17 of the Mariners’ matches so far this season, while Spaniard Baro has missed just the one match due to suspension.
The Mariners have vastly improved defensively this season with Paul Okon’s side conceding just 23 goals for the campaign.
Last season, Central Coast conceded a staggering 52 goals in 27 matches.
And Golec, in his first season at the club, believes the close bond with his teammate has laid the foundation for a solid partnership,
“It’s been fantastic [to play with Alan]. He’s got a lot of experience, coming from overseas and from Victory. He’s a fantastic player, I really enjoy playing with him,” Golec told the media on Wednesday.
“I learn a lot from him, he’s always got my back. We’re like brothers; we say to each other that we’re like family, so it’s important for us that we’re like that.
“We have a strong partnership, a good understanding, and although there are some games where we’re disappointed, especially as defenders conceding goals, the good thing is we always speak with one another, and we’re always trying to improve our game and improve each other.
"He is fantastic to have there, I really enjoy it, and I’m looking forward to the ten remaining games with him.”
Central Coast, currently three points behind sixth-placed Wanderers, welcome a wounded Brisbane Roar to Gosford on Saturday night.
Brisbane suffered a shock 3-2 loss to Philippines Football League champions Ceres-Negros in an ACL qualifier on Tuesday night.
And Golec insists the Mariners will need to be wary of a reaction from John Aloisi’s side.
“I guess it was disappointing for them, bowing out to the team from the Philippines - that’s no disrespect to them, that team was a great team who played good football – but it’s disappointing for Brisbane, so they’re going to want to bounce back from that to prove a point this week, so it is going to be a tough game for us,” Golec said.
“We’ll look over the game and assess it and see where we can hurt them, but that’s by no means saying that they’re going to come here and play exactly like they did that game. It’s going to be tough, but we’re prepared.”