Mariners wary ahead of Perth trip

They rocketed to second spot on the A-League with a win over Newcastle on Sunday but Mariners coach Graham Arnold is still contemplating several changes for the club's trip to Perth on Wednesday night.

They rocketed to second spot on the A-League with a win over Newcastle on Sunday but Mariners coach Graham Arnold is still contemplating several changes for the club's trip to Perth on Wednesday night.

In what is shaping as a danger game for the in-form Mariners, Arnold is likely to give several fringe players a hit-out against the fast-improving Glory.

One player set to have more of an impact against Perth will be midfielder John Hutchinson.

A first team regular under former Mariners coach Lawrie McKinna, Hutchinson has been unable to cement a starting spot this season with off-season recruit Rostyn Griffiths making the holding midfield position his own.

But Hutchinson came on in the second half against the Jets and scored his first goal of the campaign.

Also likely to be drafted into the squad are Mustafa Amini and former Glory striker Daniel McBreen. Both played no part against the Jets.

Michael Baird, who signed with the Mariners from Perth two weeks ago, is another itching to get on the field against his former club.

Changes are also likely in defence with veteran central defender Patrick Zwaanswijk set to miss the trip. Chris Doig is likely to come in to partner captain Alex Wilkinson.

Zwaanswijk has been one of the form defenders in the A-League but the club feels, at 36, he needs a break to have him primed for the run into the finals.

Left-sided defender Joshua Rose may also be rested.

"It's a hectic time for the club with back-to-back midweek games,'' Mariners assistant coach Phil Moss said.

"But we're happy with the depth we've got. We're going to Perth chasing three points.''