Mulvey: Mariners lost composure in F3 Derby defeat
Mike Mulvey blamed a lack of focus and composure for undermining Central Coast Mariners during the dispiriting 2-1 collapse to Newcastle Jets.
The Mariners slumped to a record fourth straight F3 Derby defeat on Sunday as Jason Hoffman and Ronny Vargas overturned Matt Simon's first-half header.
Hoffman equalised from a set-piece moments after Connor Pain squandered a golden chance to double the margin, before Vargas struck a classy winner eight minutes from the end.
Mulvey commended the way his players "gave everything" but rued the preventable lapses which condemned the club to a seventh loss in succession.
"In key moments we were found out. We took an eye off the ball, not focused in that moment," the Mariners boss told reporters.
"In those moments when the ball is not in play it is time to refocus, and in those key moments we are not refocusing, and we are not ready.
"For the corner, for example, the ball is out of play. We didn't pick up the guy that scored and it's not resilience, it's key moments in the game that cost us."
Central Coast are now winless in 15 Hyundai A-League matches and sit nine points adrift of the top six.
Mulvey insisted there is plenty still to play for a third of the way through the season.
"You have to look at the performance today – the players don't need lifting in terms of performance perspective," he said.
"If you look at the table, which everyone has the right to do within the game, they look at us and go 'hapless Mariners, write off the season', but we are not going to do that.
"If we held on to win that today, we are one point away from Brisbane. It's a cruel game at times and we were dealt a cruel blow and I'm not blaming anyone else besides ourselves.
"We will wear it. The players are man enough to be able to wear it and we've got to fix it and that's the main thing."