Spirited start for Mariners’ youth

The Central Coast Mariners National Youth League side has made it back-to-back victories to kick start their pre-season, after dispatching Spirit FC 4-nil at Christie Park.

The Central Coast Mariners National Youth League side has made it back-to-back victories to kick start their pre-season, after dispatching Spirit FC 4-nil at Christie Park.

It follows just a week after the side began preparations for its second campaign with a 3-1 win over Central Coast Lightning, thanks to goals from Nick Fitzgerald, Brady Smith and Adam Ormsby.

While six first-team players featured for periods of tonight-s match, National Youth League head coach Tony Walmsley was pleased with the performances of his squad members.

“Dylan Macallister did well up front with Matty Lewis playing in behind him, but I was pleased with the overall performance of my boys.

“Adam Ormsby followed up a goal-scoring performance last week with a great all round display on the right, and I thought our back four was particularly solid.

“The pleasing thing was the way improved as a unit as the match went on. We were a bit patchy early on, but got better as we went on,” Walmsley said.

Macallister opened the scoring just before half time with a well taken header, before recently capped Australian Under 19-s player Brendan Griffin chipped the Spirit ‘keeper from around 25 yards to make it 2-nil.

Senior squad member and star of last season-s NYL campaign Matthew Lewis added the Mariners- third goal from close range, and the night was rounded off by a late goal to trialist David Gullo.

“It was a good all-round performance. We-ve improved on last week in terms of our structure, it was a bigger pitch, and meant we had to do more work. We did that, and improved as the match went on.

“We-ve still got lots to work on, and it-s a work in progress. We have two weeks until our first game (against Adelaide at Hindmarsh Stadium), and it will take us a few weeks to get where we want to be, but the pleasing thing is we-re getting better all the time, and getting closer to that goal,” Walmsley said.

But Walmsley may have a few unwanted selection headaches for round one, which comes just two days before the New South Wales Premier League grand finals.

“I could have up to seven players out for round one, but that-s OK, there are a few of the first-team guys who still qualify as age players, and we-ll have a couple more dropping back as over-agers.

“From what I-ve seen on these two games, it-s a pretty exciting time, and the boys have proven they are up to the standard that is asked of them,” Walmsley said.

Match Details Central Coast Mariners 4 Dylan Macallister, Brendan Griffin, Matthew Lewis, David Gullo Spirit FC 0

The Mariners- NYL squad kicks-off its 2009/10 campaign against Adelaide United at Hindmarsh Stadium on Friday, 11 September, Kick-off is at 4.45pm.

Mariners Memberships for the Hyundai A-League 2009/10 season are now available online by clicking here or by phoning 1300 767 442.