Mariners secure 1-0 win in Wellington

CENTRAL Coast Mariners made it six wins from their last six games against Wellington Phoenix with a 1-0 triumph at Westpac Stadium on Sunday.

CENTRAL Coast Mariners made it six wins from their last six games against Wellington Phoenix with a 1-0 triumph at Westpac Stadium on Sunday.

The victory was the Mariners third in a row this Hyundai A-League campaign, and was secured via Daniel McBreen-s classy 68th minute strike.

Talented midfielder Tomas Rogic did supremely well to unleash the in form marksman from the left side, and McBreen made no mistake in guiding the ball past Wellington custodian Mark Paston with just over 20 minutes to play.

The win lifts Graham Arnold-s team, albeit potentially temporarily, to the top of the Hyundai A-League ladder for the first time this campaign.

The first 45 minutes of the ‘Cake Tin- contest proved entertaining despite neither side being able to break the deadlock.

With the game being played at a high intensity the first clear-cut opportunity of the contest fell to former Qantas Socceroos attacker Mile Sterjovski 29 minutes in. Dutch defender Patrick Zwaanswijk sent a precise pass to the former FC Basel man, however after neatly cutting inside Tony Lochhead and Andrew Durante, Sterjovski steered his shot wide.

Soon after consistent ‘Nix contributor Manny Muscat sent a sighter at Mathew Ryan-s goal. Muscat-s strike from 20 yards possessed power, but lacked accuracy.

Ten minutes before the break Ricki Herbert-s side had a glorious chance to go one up. Midfielder Alex Smith timed his interception in midfield to perfection before eventually finding the feet of Belgian striker Stein Huysegems. With plenty of goal to aim at, Huysegems sent his right foot effort high and wide of the Mariners- goal.

Shortly after the interval young midfielder Rogic had a good chance to net for the away side. Josh Rose burst through before cutting the ball back to the Canberra born youngster. Nevertheless, the Qantas Socceroos squad member-s strike failed to trouble Wellington gloveman Paston.

The Mariners were making the better of the attacking in-roads and just before the hour mark nearly went ahead. Rogic made a great run forward and despite being tugged back by Ben Sigmund, sent a decent shot goalwards. Paston saved and after the Phoenix defence failed to clear their lines, McBreen sent a follow up shot over the bar.

But McBreen wouldn-t have to wait long to claim the game-s only goal and his fifth of the season. Rogic tricked his markers before prodding the ball forward for the former Scunthorpe United man. After taking one touch, McBreen poked the ball past the advancing Paston to net the decisive goal of the round 6 clash.

While the Phoenix endeavoured to get themselves back into the fixture with a few late raids, in reality Ryan had little to do throughout the intense 90 minutes of football played in the New Zealand capital. Indeed, the clean sheet is Ryan-s fourth of the 2012/13 Hyundai A-League campaign.

Speaking after the contest Central Coast Mariners boss Graham Arnold praised his side-s ability to grind out a win against their respected A-League opponents.

“It is a great result for us,” Arnold said. “I am very happy with the gritty performance. You can-t always play like you did last week, and that is what is so good about our side.”

“In tough, windy conditions that made it hard to play, we got our defensive structure spot on and managed to find a way to win the game.”

“We crafted three or four more chances to score however unlike last week we didn-t take those chances.”

Arnold also praised match winner McBreen not only for his hot run of scoring form, but his work rate for the team.

“-Macca- (McBreen) is having a great run of form scoring goals but also a great run of form in the way he-s playing,” he said.

“He-s bringing others into play and doing a lot of work that goes unnoticed. I am very, very happy with the way he-s performing at the moment, Arnold concluded.

Central Coast Mariners play their next match away to Melbourne Victory at Etihad Stadium on Saturday 17 November.

The Hyundai A-League round 7 clash promises to be a ripper, with Arnold-s men sitting pretty on the ladder and Ange Postecoglou-s side enjoying their own run of good form having won two on the bounce.

Wellington Phoenix 0 Central Coast Mariners 1 (McBreen 68-) Westpac Stadium, Wellington

Wellington Phoenix: 1. Mark Paston (Gk), 2. Manny Muscat, 3. Tony Lochhead (17. Vince Lia 73-), 6. Alexander Smith, 7. Leo Bertos, 8. Paul Ifill (12. Tyler Boyd 86-), 10. Stein Huysegems (9. Benjamin Totori 72-), 11. Jeremy Brockie, 16. Louis Fenton, 18. Ben Sigmund, 22. Andrew Durante (c)

Substitutes not used: 20. Glen Moss (Gk)

Yellow cards: Sigmund 59-, Muscat 67-

Red cards: Nil

Central Coast Mariners: 1. Mathew Ryan (Gk), 2. Daniel McBreen, 3. Joshua Rose, 4. Pedj Bojic, 6. Patrick Zwaanswijk, 7. John Hutchinson (c), 10. Tomas Rogic (12. Troy Hearfield 88-), 14. Michael McGlinchey, 16. Trent Sainsbury, 18. Nick Montgomery, 21. Mile Sterjovski (9. Bernie Ibini 64-)

Substitutes not used: 20. Justin Pasfield (Gk), 5. Zachary Anderson

Yellow cards: Ibini 80-

Red cards: Nil

Attendance: 6,568

Referee: Lucien Laverdure