IN football we often speak of the “12th man” and I have to say that played a massive part in getting us over the line in last week’s crucial 1-0 victory over Perth Glory at Bluetongue Stadium.
IN football we often speak of the “12th man” and I have to say that played a massive part in getting us over the line in last week-s crucial 1-0 victory over Perth Glory at Bluetongue Stadium.
Nearly 10,000 Mariners supporters were in full voice during the game and the atmosphere at pitch level was fantastic.
When the boys needed a lift their supporters were there to pick them up in what was a football war!
We always expect tough, physical and uncompromising battles against Perth and that is exactly what we got.
The edge they had over us going into the game was the fact they were coming off a first round victory so the monkey was off their back.
The pressure was on us to deliver our first win of the season and the fact it was at “Fortress Bluetongue” added to the nerves pre-game.
I-m delighted to say the boys came through with flying colours.
All week Graham Arnold had stressed the importance of winning the physical battle to allow our football to win the game!
In the end it took a brilliant lofted pass from defender Trent Sainsbury and a fantastic first touch and finish (with his right foot too!) from super sub Daniel McBreen to split the two teams.
The grit and determination to grind out the result set a perfect platform from which to launch a raid on the Newcastle Jets in tomorrow-s first instalment of the F3 Derby at Hunter Stadium.
The Jets go into the match on the back of a loss and a win to open their season but can expect another bumper crowd - they had nearly 15,000 at their first home game a fortnight ago - after taking all three points against Sydney FC last weekend, a win that included a goal from marquee striker Emile Heskey.
It promises to be an electric atmosphere and judging by the buzz around the coast we are hopeful there will be a fair chunk of yellow and navy amongst the crowd tomorrow night.
The intensity at training this week has been what you would expect leading into a derby but the key has been keeping the boys relaxed.
No extra motivation is needed for these types of games. Everyone knows bragging rights are on the line for supporters and three points are on the line for the players and coaching staff.
The preparation under “Arnie” has been meticulous as always and the players will cross the white line in no doubt whatsoever as to what their jobs are with and without the ball.
It promises to be thriller! Kick-off is 5.30pm.
I can-t sign off this week without sending a hearty congrats to the Socceroos after their spirited 2-1 victory over Iraq. As crucial games go in World Cup Qualifiers they don-t come much bigger than this result and our national team-s qualification for the World Cup in Brazil is so important for the game in Australia.
To see an A-League striker in Archie Thompson nod home the all-important winner was the icing on the cake!
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