SULLY'S SAY: Our aim to be the A-League's Ajax Amsterdam

Central Coast Mariners Assistant Coach, Wayne O'Sullivan, gives fans an update from the dressing room in his weekly column.

“It's a fine line between winning and losing" pretty much sums up last Sunday’s game with Sydney.

Two lapses of concentration during two set pieces ended up being the difference between the two sides.

If John Hutchinson’s header goes in at 1-0 or Mitch Duke’s volley goes in at 2-0 when the game is in the balance who knows what could have been!

With three Hyundai A-League rounds down and the Westfield FFA Cup semi final upon us it’s probably an opportune time to give you some insight into the club’s thinking moving forward.

Unlike most professional sporting organisations, the Mariners have always placed a large emphasis on attempting to remain accessible with our fans and including you in our plans and preparation.

Last season when Phil Moss took over under the most turbulent of times, including a change in ownership, a senior management restructure, overhauls of playing rosters and a new head coach, the short-term goal was to re-stabilise and also remain competitive on all fronts.

During the off season whilst Melbourne City were recruiting from the English Premier League, Sydney FC were searching the globe for their latest marquee player and Western Sydney were proposing building a new stadium, our owner and the senior management decided we too needed a longer term identity that represented more than just the battlers who once again overachieved, or blue collar boys surviving another year.

At this point it was decided that rather than aim to be the Manchester United, Bayern Munich or Paris Saint-Germain of the Hyundai A-League, we would focus more on replicating the Southampton, SC Freiburg or Ajax Amsterdam models.

This model would be focused on youth and promote a long-term vision of success that could be sustained via off field development and long term on field success.

This is what we are going through now.

This year’s team is comfortably the youngest team to have played in the Hyundai A-League with an average age of just 24.

This team will naturally take some time to evolve into the finished article but is based around a long-term vision and playing style that will provide us with long-term success over many years to come.

The short-term challenge of this is to ensure that we remain competitive on a weekly basis while moving progressively toward our end goal. We may hit a few speed bumps along the way but we know that with your unrivalled loyalty and support you will help these boys achieve our ultimate goal of success.

The short term challenge for this week comes in the form of Perth Glory who are a very experienced and physical outfit and are coming off the back of some good results. However I have no doubt that with the support of our more experienced players and the energy of our youth we will provide you all with a very entertaining match on Sunday and hopefully a great result to end the week.

See you at the game.


Central Coast Mariners vs. Perth Glory – Hyundai A-League 2014/15 Round 5
When: Sunday 9 November, 2014
Where: Central Coast Stadium, Gosford
Kick-off: 5:00pm
Tickets: Please click here to purchase tickets to the match
Television: LIVE on FOX SPORTS
Twitter: @CCMariners #CCMvPER