Mariners fight for starting role

Adam Kwasnik and Ahmad Elrich are battling for a starting berth as Central Coast travels to take on struggling Adelaide in the Hyundai A-League on Friday night.

Adam Kwasnik and Ahmad Elrich are battling for a starting berth as Central Coast travels to take on struggling Adelaide in the Hyundai A-League on Friday night.

Kwasnik and Elrich both sat on the bench in last week's win against Perth but have a chance to start with attacking midfielder Michael McGlinchey on national duty with New Zealand.

Mariners coach Lawrie McKinna said either Kwasnik or Elrich would be included from the start and will push forward to support two strikers, probably Matt Simon and Nik Mrdja, who both did well last week.

Midfielder Nicky Travis will also be sent out with instructions to push forward and support the strikers.

Victory against the Reds will have the Mariners in a strong position heading into next week's home showdown against Gold Coast at Gosford.

The Mariners are in third place and have lost only one match this campaign.

"If we win in Adelaide and other results go our way we could even be playing for top spot next week," McKinna said.

"It's a huge game for us."

Meanwhile, McKinna said defender Chris Doig, who has not played since limping off with a calf injury in the Round 1 win against Melbourne, was an outside chance of playing 30 minutes in Central Coast's National Youth League team on Thursday night.

"He's getting better and has done a lot of work on the injury," McKinna said.

"We've just to make sure we don't bring him back too early."

Jamaican international Wolry Wolfe is also expected to play in the youth match and push for Hyundai A-League selection next week.