CENTRAL Coast captain John Hutchinson is confident that the Mariners can continue their unbeaten run this campaign and snatch victory in tomorrow’s F3 Derby at Hunter Stadium.
CENTRAL Coast captain John Hutchinson is confident that the Mariners can continue their unbeaten run this campaign and snatch victory in tomorrow-s F3 Derby at Hunter Stadium.
Hutchinson spoke to the media before training on Friday, and said that his team expects a tough encounter against Newcastle Jets.
“It-s a good rivalry,” Hutchinson said. “Hopefully we can go there and give our crowd something to cheer about. We know they-re (Newcastle) going to be pumped up for the game and they-ve come off a great win against Sydney, but we just need to be up for it.”
“It-s going to be a bit of a battle at the start. If we can win the battle and just play football we know we-re a better football team and we should get the points.”
Central Coast-s skipper believes the Mariners defensive partnership of Patrick Zwaanswijk and young gun Trent Sainsbury is capable of handling the threat posed by Newcastle-s marquee man Emile Heskey.
“He-s been good,” Hutchinson said of Heskey. “He-s obviously going to take a little time to settle in, but he-s an international player with great pedigree.”
“(But) I think between our back two of (Patrick) Zwaanswijk and (Trent) Sainsbury, we-re in good hands. They have had two really good games together. ‘Sains- has stepped up from ‘Wilko- (Alex Wilkinson) and hopefully he can keep that form going.”
Mariners Assistant Coach Phil Moss also praised young defender Sainsbury following his impressive start to the new season.
“He has certainly stepped up into the breach left by Alex Wilkinson and they are pretty big shoes to fill,” Moss said. “Trent says he came into the team with size 7 (shoes) and he was trying to replace a size 15. It-s a pretty good analogy. He-s really stepped up and matured.”
Hutchinson also described what the rivalry against the Jets means to him and the yellow and navy faithful.
“We see our supporters love it, our members want to win the game as well, and it-s a massive game for them. As players of this wonderful football club, we know how important it is for them so we get fired up to win the game for them,” he said.
However, Moss said that although it is a huge occasion for the fans, picking up all three points is he and Graham Arnold-s main focus.
“Without putting a dampener on the derby it means to me three points, that-s all that matters to me as a coach and I-m sure ‘Arnie- (Graham Arnold) as well. For the supporters, it-s fantastic.”
“There-s that extra-added spice in the crowd and that electricity in the atmosphere that you can feel. We have to keep a lid on things as a coaching staff and players and just go there and get the three points. For the supporters, we-re hoping to deliver bragging rights again for them,” Moss concluded.
Newcastle Jets vs. Central Coast Mariners Saturday 20 October, 2012 - Kick-off: 5:30pm (local) Hunter Stadium, Newcastle Tickets: Please CLICK HERE to purchase tickets to the match. Transport: Please CLICK HERE to book your seat on the official Mariners match day bus thanks to Coastal Liner. Twitter: Join the match conversation on Twitter using the official match hashtag #F3Derby & #GoMariners