Popovic refusing to underestimate Central Coast Mariners

Perth Glory head coach Tony Popovic is not about to take Central Coast Mariners lightly despite their contrasting starts to the season.

Perth head into the rebel Female Football Round top of the table after dropping just two points, the same tally as their visitors have accumulated.

MATCH PREVIEW: Perth Glory v Central Coast Mariners
SUPPORT: FFA and Clubs to celebrate Rebel Female Football Round
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Central Coast, meanwhile, are in last place and hefty outsiders at nib Stadium as they seek to improve on a collection of just one point from their previous seven trips to Perth in Hyundai A-League.

However, Popovic is adamant his team cannot afford to be at anything but their best.

"After Round 2, the Mariners were being talked about as being able to challenge and make a real statement this year," he told the club website.

"Now, two weeks later, they're bottom and people are saying that they're not up to it.

"But we are under no illusions about what we're up against. We are up against a dangerous side who have good players and we'll make sure that we prepare well.

"If we prepare well and perform to our capabilities in front of our home fans, then we can get another three points. If we don't, it'll be a very dangerous game.

"I'm sure they'll come with a mindset of being very resilient and trying to improve upon their recent performances."

Popovic also kept his cards close to his chest regarding how much involvement the returning Diego Castro will have, despite confirming the winger's return to full training during the international break.

"We'll have to wait and see whether he's involved in the game, whether he starts, or is on the bench, or whether he has to wait another week," he added.

"We'll know a lot more after today and tomorrow.

"He's been doing all the sessions with the rest of the team these last 10 days, but we want to make sure that he can make a difference and that we're helping him by not throwing him in too early for the sake of one match."