Central Coast coach Phil Moss said the Mariners beat themselves in a horror 5-1 drubbing by Sydney FC in Gosford on Saturday night.
The home-side conceded two goals inside the opening 20 minutes and were well and truly out of the contest by halftime when former Mariner Bernie Ibini slotted a third.
It only got worse after the break with Marc Janko adding his second and Alex Brosque finding a fifth.
The only highlight for the hapless Mariners was a 66th minute Travis Major goal, but that was too little, too late.
“I think there’s players in the dressing room who need to take responsibility for the goals we shipped tonight and at the end of the day we beat ourselves,” Moss said afterwards.
“Credit to Sydney FC for taking the chance when they did but we had some chances to take something out of it too.
“(In the first 15 minutes) we played some good football and I thought we played superbly and attacked well with Dukey threatening .
“I thought there was good energy but then we switched off and give away a ridiculous goal.
“We worked for two weeks on defending crosses from wide areas and defending crosses in the box and picking up players, because players score goals in space and they scored two goals like that tonight.
“That comes down to responsibility and accountability and it comes down to being switched on to your job.
“Training for the last two weeks has been absolutely outstanding, it really has. I didn’t see a result like that coming tonight but again we were our own worst enemies.”
Moss was tight-lipped about the Mariners-led “Cashed up Arnie” campaign in a local paper that urged fans to print off novelty bank notes with former Central Coast coach Graham Arnold’s face on them.
In his own post-match press conference, Arnold said the gimmick probably worked in favour of Sydney FC and Moss wouldn’t have been pleased with it.
“What I’d like to talk about is the game tonight to be honest,” Moss said.
“It’s not my job to talk about advertising campaigns.“I’ve got my own thoughts about it but at the end of the day my job is to coach the football team, and I take responsibility for it (the result) as the coach.”