The Central Coast Mariners Foxtel National Youth League team are top of the league and unbeaten in six matches thanks to their convincing win over the Western Sydney Wanderers.
Josh Bingham was deployed up front for Ben Cahn’s Foxtel National Youth League side and bagged himself a brace for the afternoon which added to a stunning strike from distance by Mortaza Safdari to seal all three points for the Yellow & Navy.
It was dominant opening 20 minutes of play from the Central Coast Mariners side who created several chances leading into the drinks break and should have had the lead multiple times in the first 10 minutes.
In addition to Josh Bingham, Mickael Tavares was given 90 minutes at the Central Coast Mariners Centre of Excellence who was composed in midfield and showed he is close to successfully returning to Hyundai A-League action after sustaining an ankle injury.
Lachlan Wales went close on two occasions in the first 10 minutes but the Wanderers’ shot stopper, Nicholas Suman was on fire to make several point blanks saves to keep his side in the battle very early.
Bingham showed his signs of class in the opening stages as well but Suman was again on hand to deny his header in the sixth minute of play.
Despite dominating field position and possession, the Western Sydney Wanderers found themselves a goal up in the 16th minute after the shot of Ramy Najjarine took a heavy deflection and flew into Adam Pearce’s net, giving him no chance against the run of play.
After a quick drink break in the 23rd minute Bingham had his goal after imposing himself as a real threat up front for most of the first half. Shelford Dais whipped in a pinpoint cross that allowed Bingham to leap above the pack and head home to equalise in the 30th minute.
Play continued evenly for remainder of the half and both teams went into the sheds on level terms at the break. The second half kicked off in the same fashion as the first half and it wouldn’t be long until the Mariners would take the lead.
Wales and Peter Kekeris both went close in the first couple of minutes but as he has done already this season, Safdari pulled the trigger from distance and his spectacular effort had the Mariners a goal up in the 53rd minute.
A minute later the Yellow & Navy made it 3-1 when Dais broke into the box and was brought down illegally. Bingham took the honours and sent Suman the wrong way to double his own tally for the afternoon.
The final half an hour quietened down and the number of chances was limited for both sides but the score remained unchanged, confirming a well-earned three points at home for the Mariners.
Although the Central Coast Mariners sit top of the Foxtel National Youth League ladder, we have a bye next week before the team’s final match of the campaign against Sydney FC at home on Saturday 21 January.
Central Coast Mariners Youth: 1.Adam PEARCE (GK), 2.Shelford DAIS, 5.Gianni STENSNESS, 7.Lachlan WALES, 8.Thomas LYONS, 10.Mickael TAVARES, 12.Mortaza SAFDARI (Brenton Fox 53’), 14.Zac SFILIGOI, 17.Josh BINGHAM (Lee 80’), 18.Steve WHYTE, 21.Peter KEKERIS (Enticknap 74’)
Western Sydney Wanderers Youth: 1.Nicholas SUMAN (GK), 2.Lachlan CAMPBELL, 3.Henry DAVIES (Cordier 64’), 4.Abdelrahman KUKU, 7.Manyiel RIEL MAJOK, 8.Charles ABOU SERHAL, 9.Ramy NAJJARINE, 10.Tariq MAIA (c), 12.Jackson BANDIERA, 15.Mohamed NAJJAR (Viggiani 64’), 17.Emilio MARTINEZ (Grozos 64’)