Murray shines as Mariners' new boys light up Bolt's trial
Geographically, the distance from Leichhardt to Gosford may be long, but for the Central Coast Mariners’ new striker, Jordan Murray, it’s same performance, different team.
The 23-year-old looked right at home as he and his new teammates dismantled Macarthur South West United at Campbelltown Sports Stadium on Friday night.
Murray was one of 19 Hyundai A-League and Westfield W-League stars identified by Hero Scouts Tim Cahill and Amy Duggan as players to keep a close eye on in 2018/19 - and the lethal frontman is already turning heads.
Murray attracted the attention of Mariners head coach Mike Mulvey after his record-breaking season in the NSW NPL where he bagged 23 goals in 19 games. It seems Mulvey was right to show faith in the youngster, when, on 42 minutes, Murray climbed highest to head home Jack Clisby’s delicious corner.
Yet, as every professional will tell you, a player is only as good as their teammates, and thankfully for Murray he’s surrounded by some serious talent.
Usain Bolt leading the line may have been the headline news but deeper, however, is where the real magic happened.
Ross McCormack, having last played in a professional fixture on January 25, was pulling the strings as he combined his deft touch with an exquisite reading of the game. The Scotland international put Bolt through for his first ever goal, and played a part in Bolt’s second, too.
The Mariners may well be wreaking havoc out wide in Hyundai A-League Season 2018/19 thanks to another new signing, Tommy Oar. The diminutive wide-man has some serious pace to burn, and can cross the ball like no other.
It took Oar only seven minutes to get his first assist in the Mariners’ blue and yellow, whipping in a pin-point cross for McCormack. Mariners fans will take delight in knowing that at 26 years old, Oar is at the peak of his powers. And, based off last night’s performance, it seems the sky is the limit.
Interestingly, Oar will want to be at his best from the first minute of Season 2018/19 as he returns to where it all began. Central Coast Mariners travel to Suncorp Stadium to take on John Aloisi's Brisbane Roar at 5pm, in what will be a tight contest. Both teams have a point to prove this season and will want to kickstart their respective seasons with a win.
They say Rome wasn’t built in a day, but it seems Mulvey has only needed a few weeks to bring spark back into Gosford.