'It's done': Mulvey draws line in sand after Millar snubs Mariners for rivals
Mike Mulvey has spoken out on a day of high consequence in Mariners camp which has resulted in Central Coast star Matt Millar signing with local rivals Newcastle Jets for the 2019/20 season.
Millar, who joined the Mariners from South Melbourne in pre-season, was sent home from training on Thursday after deciding to pledge his future to the Jets following ongoing negotiations with the club and an offer in waiting from Central Coast.
And the Jets put an end to any speculation by officially announcing their capture of Millar on Friday.
“It came down to the lad, whether he wanted to stay to play for the club or whether he was going to go and play for Newcastle,” Mulvey told reporters.
“He came in yesterday morning and said he changed his mind four or five times and he thought he would be better developed by going to Newcastle.
“He made that decision and it was a difficult time for Matt. He’s a really popular guy among our group but he’s made a decision and he needs to live with that decision.
“I’m comfortable with that because he’s a human being. If he had his time again, maybe he would have waited because the offer we actually tabled was quite a good deal, more than what he’s going to earn at Newcastle next season.
“But it’s done. By sending him home yesterday, it allowed him to clear his head and allowed us to clear our heads."
Mulvey also confirmed that Millar would feature for the Mariners in Saturday afternoon’s clash with Melbourne Victory, calling for him to rise to the challenge in the increased spotlight.
In doing so, Mulvey drew comparisons to Besart Berisha’s signing for Melbourne Victory in January 2014, and how the legendary Hyundai A-League marksman's commitment was not once questioned.
“I look at when I was in Brisbane we had Besart Berisha, who signed for Melbourne Victory halfway through the season," he said.
"I looked him in the eyes and said ‘I understand what you’re doing, I understand why it’s happening – can we count on you for this season?’
“He said absolutely, 100%. He ended up scoring a winning goal in a semi-final and an equaliser in the grand final. He wore his heart on his sleeve.
“Matt will play tomorrow, we’ll see how he goes. It’s up to him now, he’s got to live in the spotlight.
“You don’t cut your nose to spite your face. He’s been playing very well for us and let’s see if we can continue that tomorrow.”