The wait is finally over for Central Coast goalkeeper Justin Pasfield who is set to make his Mariners debut in Saturday’s Hyundai A-League match against Sydney FC.
The wait is finally over for Central Coast goalkeeper Justin Pasfield who is set to make his Mariners debut in Saturday-s Hyundai A-League match against Sydney FC.
The former North Queensland Fury shot-stopper played the bulk of the pre-season between the sticks for the Mariners with regular goalkeeper Mathew Ryan out with a knee injury.
Ryan returned in time for the start of the season with Pasfield forced to watch on from the bench during the Mariners solid start to the campaign.
Pasfield trained strongly with Mariners goalkeeping coach John Crawley so he would be ready when and if an opportunity arrived.
Now with Ryan away on national under-23 duty Pasfield gets his chance to start when the Mariners tackle the in-form Sydneysiders at the Sydney Football Stadium.
Pasfield is desperate to make the most of his long awaited opportunity to shine on Saturday night.
"It has been tough, but it-s given me time to improve and work on things at training," Pasfield said.
Ryan is not the only Mariners missing due to national duty with left-sided midfielder Oliver Bozanic also out.
Veterans John Hutchinson and Adriano Pellegrino are both in line to come in for Bozanic.
Hutchinson was an un-used replacement in last week-s scoreless draw with Melbourne Victory after returning from a stint in the Chinese Super League.
After starting the first few matches Pellegrino has lost his place in recent weeks with veteran Daniel McBreen excelling in the attacking midfield position.
After back-to-back wins the Mariners squandered several match-winning chances in a scoreless draw with Melbourne Victory last week.
Coach Graham Arnold will be hoping his attacking players will be more ruthless in front of goals against the Sky Blues.