TOMORROW at Central Coast Stadium the Mariners play host to Sydney FC who are desperate for a win after recently slipping out of the Hyundai A-League top 6. Despite their poor run of form domestically, the Sky Blues are flying high in the AFC Champions League, sitting top of Group H.
The Yellow & Navy are without key attacking weapons, Mitch Austin & Luis Garcia who both saw red in the Mariners’ last fixture against Perth Glory. Mickey Neill is putting his hand back up for selection after spending a week on the sideline suspended, so all eyes will be on how Walmsley will re-jig his squad to cope with the change.
Sydney FC recorded an impressive 1-0 win in against Pohang Steelers on their home turf at Steelyard Stadium to go top of Group H thanks to a Christopher Naumoff strike.
Despite a quick turnaround, Sydney FC arrive on the Central Coast full of positivity and plenty of key weapons well rested with the likes of Filip Hološko, Jacques Faty and Shane Smeltz.
DON'T FORGET! This Saturday it's MasterFoods match day! The first 1000 families through the gates at Central Coast Stadium receive a MasterFoods sample bag. Who are you bringing?#MakeDinnertimeMatter
“The boys are chomping at the bit to play at home against Sydney FC and give the fans something to cheer about,” Montgomery said.
“To be honest it’s good to see that players are frustrated because it means they care, if they weren’t frustrated and looking forward to the end of the season that would be unacceptable.
“Fans want to support a team that’s winning and we completely understand that, I know the club is working hard to bring in the players that we really need so hopefully some signings in the off-season can boost that optimism.
“To go away to Korea and get any kind of result is a great achievement, so congrats to Arnie on that,” Walmsley said.
“Sydney FC have plenty to play for, they want to be in the top 6, they’re Sydney FC so let’s face it, they should be in the top 6 but our lads know what the job at hand is.
“When you’re in the situation you’re in at some point that desire needs to surface and it can’t manifest itself in nerves or fear anymore it has to come out in application or performance,” Walmsley said.
Central Coast Mariners squad: 1.Paul IZZO (gk), 3.Josh ROSE, 4.Jacob POSCOLIERO, 5.Harry ASCROFT, 7.Fabio FERREIRA, 8.Nick MONTGOMERY (c), 9.Roy O’DONOVAN, 12.Trent BUHAGIAR, 15.Brad McDONALD, 16.Liam ROSE, 17.Francesco STELLA, 19.Josh BINGHAM, 21.Michael NEILL, 22.Jake McGING, 23.Tomislav USKOK, 25.Adam BERRY, 28.Matthew FLETCHER, 30.Adam PEARCE (gk)
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 12.Trent BUHAGIAR (promoted), 17.Francesco STELLA (promoted), 21.Michael NEILL (return from suspension), 25.Adam BERRY (promoted)
Outs: 6.Mitch AUSTIN (suspended – 1 week), 10.Luis GARCIA (suspended – 1 week)
Unavailable: 2.Storm Roux (fractured fibula – season)
Sydney FC squad: 1.Vedran JANJETOVIC (gk), 2.Seb RYALL, 5.Matt JURMAN, 6.Rob STAMBOLZIEV, 7.Andrew HOOLE, 8.Milos DIMITRIJEVIC, 9.Shane SMELTZ, 11.Chris NAUMOFF, 13.Brandon O’NEILL, 17.David CARNEY, 18.Matt SIMON, 19.Jacques FATY, 20.Ivan NECEVSKI (gk), 21.Filip HOLOSKO, 22.Ali ABBAS, 23.Rhyan GRANT, 25.Aaron CALVER, 27.Mickael TAVARES
**two to be omitted**
Ins: 7.Andrew HOOLE (promoted), 11.Chris NAUMOFF (promoted), 18.Matt SIMON (promoted)
Outs: 10.Milos NINKOVIC (ankle – 1 week)
Unavailable: 14.Alex BROSQUE (hamstring – 5 weeks)
- Sydney FC have won their last five matches against Central Coast Mariners, the longest streak of any team in the history of this fixture.
- The Mariners have conceded 70% of their goals in the second half of league games (39 goals) – 14 goals more than any other club.
- After consecutive losses Sydney FC sit on the precipice of three straight defeats for the first time since Round 4, 2013/14.
- Only once before in A-League history (5 matches, 2005/06 Final – Rd 4, 2006/07) have Central Coast gone more matches without scoring a goal than they currently have (3 games).
Central Coast Mariners: LLLLL
Sydney FC: LDDLL
Saturday 19 March 2016
Match: Central Coast Mariners vs. Sydney FC Venue: Central Coast Stadium, Gosford
Gates open: 4:15pm (AEDT)
Kick-off: 5:15pm (AEDT)
TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 505
Radio Broadcast: 96.3 Coast FM
Twitter: Join the match conversation using #CCMvSYD #CCMFC