The Mariners have one regular season match remaining before beginning their first A-League Finals tilt in seven years, and Alen Stajcic said on Friday the team are ready for a ‘whole new competition’ beginning next weekend.
The Mariners progress was sealed earlier this week when Brisbane defeated Perth 2-0, and Saturday’s clash with Western United gives Stajcic and his side the opportunity to secure a home elimination final.
“The destiny is in our hands,” Stajcic said on Friday ahead of the team’s final training session.
“If we win our game then we will finish 3rd or 4th so we control our own destiny, and we’ve put ourselves in that position through 25 rounds not 25 minutes. It’s a full season of work that has enabled us to be in this position so that’s a tribute to the playing group on how well we’ve performed to give ourselves that opportunity at this point.”
Plenty of praise has come the way of Stajcic and the Mariners after locking in finals for the first time since 2013/14, but the boss was keen to stress that the job is far from done on the Coast, with eyes firmly on a Grand Final berth.
“Look it’s an amazing achievement for us to make finals, and I pay tribute to everyone at the club,” he said.
“The playing group, the coaching staff, the football staff who have all worked tremendously hard to put us in this position. It’s a great accomplishment but it’s only step one of the journey.”
“We’ve got a big game Saturday but the following weekend it’s a whole new competition, and we’re all really excited to have the opportunity to play final and put ourselves into a grand final.”
“Having that excitement level and that waiting for the week after just gives us a great sense of accomplishment and desire to get there and get to that weekend match where we can show ourselves in that life and death moment.”
“It’s just a great moment for the team and it’s a celebration we should have but we can’t rest on our laurels, it’s just one part of the journey, and the big part is to come."
“We really want to get into the grand final and we’ve shown we can compete against all those teams in the finals.”
Game Details |
Saturday, 5 June 2021
Central Coast Mariners v Western United FC
Central Coast Stadium, Gosford
Kick-Off: 5:05pm (Local)(5:05pm (AEST))
Referee: Jack Morgan
Assistant Referee 1: Scott Edeling
Assistant Referee 2: Adam Powers
Fourth Official: Tim Danaskos
VAR: Kris Griffiths-Jones
TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 505 from 5:00pm (AEST), ABC TV from 5:00pm (AEST), Sky Sport 7 (New Zealand) , Kayo Sports (www.kayosports.com.au) and MyFootball Live App, Live Fast and Data Free for Telstra mobile customers
Radio Broadcast: myfootballnation.com (SEN Track Central Coast 801am), COAST FM 96.3
Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash-tag #CCMvWUN