Mariners happy to fly under the radar
Mariners coach Phil Moss hopes his team are being overlooked leading into the Hyundai A-League finals series after registering a 2-1 win over Heart on Sunday.
Central Coast Mariners coach Phil Moss hopes his team are being overlooked leading into the Hyundai A-League finals series after registering a determined 2-1 win over Melbourne Heart on Sunday.
The reigning champions recovered from conceding Orlando Engelaar's extraordinary goal, struck from within the Dutchman's own half, to score twice and claim all three points at AAMI Park.
The win means the Mariners are still in the hunt for a top-two finish with three rounds of the regular season remaining.
And with a campaign of upheaval finally beginning to settle down, Moss is looking to capitalise on the club's low-key lead-in to the playoffs.
'Not many pundits have given us a hope this season. There was plenty of talk three, four weeks ago that we wouldn't make the finals and now we're in a strong position,' he said.
'We're not there yet. We've got to build and it's going to be great this week to have a full preparation for the West Sydney game.'
'We haven't had a day off for 21 days so it's been a hard slog.'
Moss freely admitted Engelaar's goal, which came a day after Manchester United's Wayne Rooney grabbed headlines with his own long-range strike, was one of the best goals he's ever seen in person.
'I've seen a couple of them on TV, I've never seen one live,' he said, jokingly.
'Look, it was sheer quality. He didn't even take a touch, he just turned, knew where the goal was and the technical ability to actually execute is of (the) top shelf.'
The Mariners boss also said no real blame would be placed on goalkeeper Liam Reddy, who was off his line but could not have anticipated being caught out in such a way.
'These things happen,' Moss said with a wry smile.
'He just said to me in the dressing room he's good for one of those a season so hopefully that's the last one.'