Match Report | Ibini special secures semi-final success

Central Coast Mariners are just one win away from back-to-back Hyundai A-League Grand Final appearances and the opportunity to defend their domestic crown following a deserved 1-0 win over Adelaide United in Gosford on Saturday night.

Central Coast Mariners are just one win away from back-to-back Hyundai A-League Grand Final appearances and the opportunity to defend their domestic crown following a deserved 1-0 win over Adelaide United in Gosford on Saturday night.

A stunning strike from talented attacker Bernie Ibini in the 67th minute proved enough for the yellow and navy to record their second win against Josep Gombau-s side this campaign, and elevate Phil Moss-s men into a sudden-death Grand Final qualifier against Western Sydney Wanderers.

The Mariners will meet the Wanderers next Saturday night at Parramatta-s Pirtek Stadium, with the winner to advance to the Hyundai A-League decider against either Brisbane Roar or Melbourne Victory.

Before the Mariners take on Tony Popovic-s team, both Central Coast and Western Sydney will take part in AFC Champions League action. Indeed, Moss-s side will fly to Japan on Easter Sunday and take on Sanfrecce Hiroshima on Wednesday, while Popovic-s men will battle China-s Guizhou Renhe on Tuesday evening at their home base.

Despite the fact his side will only arrive in Australia from Japan next Friday morning, Moss said his team will be ready to test the Wanderers infront of what-s expected to be a raucous, sell-out Stadium.

The increasingly impressive Mariners mentor insists all the pressure will be on the red-and-blacks come next Saturday night.

“It will be a great test,” Moss said of the Wanderers match. “There is history obviously from last year-s Grand Final, but it will be interesting to see how they handle the pressure. All the pressure will be on them next week [because] everyone is expecting them to get through to the big one.”

“Although we-re an emerging squad we have plenty of players who know how to win big games and I think that shone through tonight as well.”

“We-ll turn up to Pirtek [Stadium] next week and won-t be a push over, that-s for sure.”

“No one has tipped us to make the Grand Final, let alone win it, so it will be nice to come home from Japan and go into a game like that with nothing to lose,” he said.

After a relatively even first half at Central Coast Stadium, Central Coast Mariners turned up the heat on Adelaide United in the second stanza to book their place in week two of the 2014 Hyundai A-League playoffs.

Indeed, Mitchell Duke was straight into the action after the break as he struck an effort at goal that Eugene Galekovic saved.

The pacey pair of Duke and Ibini combined in the 58th minute. Duke played in Ibini, however the on-loan Shanghai SIPG man-s shot was collected by the sometimes Socceroos custodian.

But Galekovic could do little to prevent what would prove to be the games only, and thus decisive goal in the 67th minute of play. After a combination between Anthony Caceres and Duke, Ibini thundered an effort beyond Adelaide-s number one to send the vast majority of the 9,045-strong crowd into raptures.

While Adelaide threw men forward as the clock wound down, Central Coast remained cool, calm and collected to seal yet another finals date with the Wanderers.

Central Coast Mariners FC 1 (Ibini 67-) Adelaide United FC 0 Central Coast Stadium, Gosford

Central Coast Mariners FC: 12. Liam REDDY (Gk), 3. Josh ROSE, 5. Zac ANDERSON, 8. Nick MONTGOMERY (C), 9. Mitchell DUKE (19. Matt SIMON 82-), 11. Nick FITZGERALD (21. Mile STERJOVSKI 90+2-), 15. Storm ROUX, 17. Anthony CACERES, 20. Bernie IBINI, 25. Eddy BOSNAR, 28. Glen TRIFIRO (7. John HUTCHINSON 65-) Substitutes not used: 1. Justin PASFIELD (Gk), 26. KIM Seung-yong Yellow cards: Bosnar, Anderson Red cards: Nil

Adelaide United FC: 1. Eugene GALEKOVIC (C), 3. Nigel BOOGAARD, 4. Jonathan MCKAIN, 5. Osama MALIK, 7. Jeronimo NEUMANN (11. Bruce DJITE 61-), 8. ISAIAS, 9. Sergio CIRIO, 10. Marcello CARRUSCA, 14. Cameron WATSON, (17. Awer MABIL 74-) 18. Michael ZULLO, 22. Fabio FERREIRA Substitutes not used: 20. Paul IZZO (Gk), 23. Jordan ELSEY, 32. Nathan KONSTANDOPOULOS Yellow cards: Zullo, Watson, Isaias, Carrusca, McKain Red cards: Nil

Referee: Ben Williams Attendance: 9,045

(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_GB/all.js#xfbml=1"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk')); Post by Central Coast Mariners.