Weekly Warm-Up: Central Coast Mariners v Melbourne Heart

Prepare for a Heart-stopper at Bluetongue Stadium as last week's derby heroes aim for back-to-back wins!

Central Coast Mariners v Melbourne Heart Saturday 26th November, 5.30pm

Prepare for a Heart-stopper at Bluetongue Stadium as last week's derby heroes aim for back-to-back wins!

The Hyundai A-League 2011/12 season may have started slowly for Central Coast Mariners, with just one point coming from their first three games, but things are really starting to happen now for Graham Arnold's troops.

With three wins and one draw from the last four matches, the Yellow and Navy now find themselves in second place on the ladder and, just like last season, ready to challenge Brisbane Roar for top spot.

Now is a great time to get along and show your support. It's gearing up to be another fantastic campaign, so get on board at this early stage and follow your local side right the way through to the finish line. With your backing, the Mariners really have a chance of silverware. Show them on Saturday just how passionate you can be!

If there was an indicator of just how much potential this team has, it came last week in the New South Wales derby against Sydney FC. What a performance the away team put in against a club that was on a huge high going into the match!

After a cracking free kick from star import Patrick Zwaanswijk and a neat finish from Michael McGlinchey either side of half-time had given them a commanding 2-0 lead, they showed excellent mental toughness as the Sky Blues set about their - now trademark - fightback.

If Nicky Carle's header gave Mariners the wobbles, they certainly didn't show it, and simply marched up the other end and restored their two-goal advantage through Troy Hearfield. Brett Emerton's perfect free kick set up a grand-stand finish, but some dogged defending ensured the points were heading back to the Central Coast along with an army of joyous fans.

Just like their hosts, Melbourne Heart go into this Saturday's game on the back of an impressive away victory last weekend. Goals from midfielder Matt Thompson and Argentine Jonathan Germano were enough to secure a hard-fought 2-1 triumph at Skilled Park.

That's two wins on the bounce for Heart, who, in spite of their slow start to the season in terms of points on the board, have played good stuff from Week One. Now, they are beginning to reap the rewards, with the win against United following a standout 3-0 thrashing of Newcastle Jets a week earlier.

The Mariners' back-line will have to be at their best on Saturday, as Heart are showing an ever-increasing mobility and fluidity in the final third. This is dangerous team to play against and, also, a side that continues to grow in confidence.

After losing their first two games, they are now unbeaten in five. However, they will likely once again be without Brazilian striker Alex Terra for the clash in Gosford, as he is still feeling the effects of a hamstring strain.

It's a match-up that pits two sides in fantastic form against each other. Who will grab the game by the scruff of the neck and come away with the win that will prove them to be genuine challengers this season?

Can the Mariners keep the pressure on Brisbane Roar at the top, or will Heart leapfrog them on the ladder? This one is simply not to be missed, so book your tickets today and get ready for incredible excitement.

Last Saturday night, the travelling Yellow Army made an awesome amount of noise at Sydney Football Stadium, so now it's time to ramp up the decibels even more on home soil. Sing your heart out!