Jets remain confident

Newcastle coach Branko Culina is confident his side can still make an impact in the Hyundai A-League finals despite watching his team slump to another disappointing defeat in Gosford on Monday night.

Newcastle coach Branko Culina is confident his side can still make an impact in the Hyundai A-League finals despite watching his team slump to another disappointing defeat in Gosford on Monday night.

After a bright start the Jets were outplayed by the Central Coast Mariners at Bluetongue Stadium.

The 3-0 defeat was the team's third in succession and has many experts writing off the club's semi-final prospects with only one match remaining before the play-offs.

Culina admitted he was 'disappointed' with various aspects of the performance, including the second-half sending off of Labinot Haliti after he picked up two yellow cards, the first for diving and the second for a deliberate handball.

"We need to rediscover the form of a few weeks back," Culina said.

"We'll get it right."

Mariners coach Lawrie McKinna was upbeat after watching his team win in the A-League for the first time since November 21.

Although out of the finals race the performance will give the club plenty of confidence moving forward.

"I'm just happy for the players, they've worked hard all season and we've copped a lot of criticism for the poor run of results," McKinna said.

"But that is probably one of the most convincing games we've played against our local rivals in five years."

A highlight of the performance for McKinna were the efforts of young guns Panny Nikas, Matthew Lewis and Brady Smith.

Nikas, the club's youth team skipper, started, while Smith and Lewis were impressive coming off the bench in the second half.

All are expected to feature in the club's final match of the campaign against Wellington in New Zealand on Friday.

The match was extra special for veteran Mariners defender Andrew Clark.

It was Clark's final appearance at Gosford after announcing his retirement in the build-up to the match.

"It's a great way to finish," Clark said.