Victory end Mariners winning run

The Central Coast Mariners have fallen 3-0 at the hands of Melbourne Victory in Gosford after Besart Berisha’s brace and a goal to James Troisi.

Central Coast Mariners 0 Melbourne Victory 3 (Berisha 25’ & 90’, Troisi 58’)

The Run Down

The Central Coast Mariners have fallen 3-0 at the hands of Melbourne Victory in Gosford after Besart Berisha’s brace and a goal to James Troisi.

Hot off the back of three wins in a row, the Mariners fronted up full of confidence at Central Coast Stadium and battled with the second placed Melbourne Victory in front of a seven thousand strong crowd who braved the erratic weather conditions.

It was a high tempo first half at Central Coast Stadium that saw chances flying at both ends with the wide men offering plenty throughout the opening 45 minutes of play.

For the Mariners, Fabio Ferreira had his hand in everything as a number 10 who looked very sharp in the middle of the park. Most of the Yellow & Navy’s success in attack was channeled down the right wing through Trent Buhagiar who whipped several balls into the box.

Unfortunately for the home team they couldn’t convert from their six corners of the first half and Melbourne Victory capitalised on their first big chance of the match on the end of some impressive passing which resulted in a great team goal.

It was the Hyundai A-League’s most prolific marksman who did the damage at the northern end of Central Coast Stadium leaving Paul Izzo helpess from such close range.

On the hour mark the Victory went on to double their lead thanks to some individual brilliance by Troisi. The attacking midfielder made a timely interception before firing his strike into the roof of Izzo’s net.  

At the other end of the pitch, young midfielder Adam Berry was the next Mariner to put his hand up and attempt to jag a goal back with a rocket from thirty yards out. Berry’s strike from distance was just wide of the upright.

As Berisha tends to do so well, the Albanian made his presence known in stoppage time with his second goal of the night in front of the travelling Victory supporters.

The result now makes for a crucial #F3Derby next Sunday in Newcastle against the Jets where a win to Okon’s Yellow & Navy would see them leapfrog our fierce rivals on the Hyundai A-League ladder.


0-1 Victory: Besart Berisha 25’
A great team goal gave Melbourne Victory the lead down the left flank. Started by Daniel Georgievski who found the crafty Marco Rojas in the box. Rojas then had Berisha charging into the area who gave Izzo no chance with his close range strike.

0-2 Victory: James Troisi 58’
James Troisi took the game into his own hands just before the hour mark with an individual goal. After dispossessing Jake McGing, Troisi broke into space and fired home from a tough angle to double the Victory lead.

0-3 Victory: Besart Berisha 90’
A misguided back pass from the Mariners allowed the Albanian striker to pounce and he took full advantage, dribbling around a defender before firing into the net just before the full-time whistle.  

Paolo in the press

“Victory didn’t perform that well against Newcastle last week so we were expecting a strong performance from them and I guess they came here smelling a little blood,” Okon said. “We did well in those first 15 minutes when we were under pressure to not concede.

“From where I was sitting it looked like Bes [Besart Berisha] was offside, it could have gone either way but I thought we started bright again in the second half, we had some moments and got the ball into some dangerous areas but we really didn’t threaten the goal enough and after a little bit of fatigue we gave away the second and third goal which saw Melbourne Victory go away deserved winners.
“It’s a great finish by Troisi and I think at times we saw the difference in quality between the two teams. We fought hard, we certainly are at no fault through effort and it’s a result that disappoints us because it was a home game and defensively we’ve been very good of late. We gave the opposition opportunities and a bit of a blowout score but everything now turns to the #F3Derby next Sunday.

“The last month has been superb, the points reflect that but even prior to that I think we were playing OK – we had some good performances and the two games we had here over the Christmas period against Sydney & Melbourne City could have and should have given us more points.

“People ask as if we want to make the top six or if we think we can make it – it isn’t our focus, our focus is to compete, try and win every game and if we’re close enough then it’s obvious that we’re going to fight for it. From that respect, you could maybe look at tonight as a step backwards but when you consider where we’ve come from and where we are – we still have a lot to play for.

“Our expectations have been met because I wanted to see a team that would compete every week, that would fight and try and win. Ultimately that’s what it’s about. We’ve never set up to defend for our lives or be negative, that’s not the type of football we want to play.

“We’re delighted with the way Fab’s [Fabio Ferreira] travelling, hopefully he can continue to deliver performances, we want him to score more goals and it’s a question of continuing to work and keep getting into those areas where we think he can threaten. At the start, he found playing as a 10 a bit difficult and he wasn’t too fond of it, I think it’s grown on him and he can see how effective he can be,” Okon said.

Central Coast Mariners: 20.Paul IZZO (gk), 2.Storm ROUX (c) (21.Michael NEILL, 90'), 3.Scott GALLOWAY, 4.Jacob POSCOLIERO, 7.Fabio FERREIRA, 14.Adam BERRY, 12.Trent BUHAGIAR (17.Josh BINGHAM 80’), 11.Connor PAIN (13.Kwabena APPIAH 73’), 16.Liam ROSE, 22.Jake McGING

Substitutes not used: 1.Ivan NECEVSKI (gk), 5.Harry ASCROFT

Melbourne Victory squad:  2.Jason GERIA, 4.Nick ANSELL (17.James DONACHIE 56’), 5.Daniel GEORGIEVSKI, 7.Marco ROJAS, 8.Besart BERISHA, 10.James TROISI, 13.Oliver BOZANIC (6.Leigh BROXHAM 70’), 15.Alan BARO, 20.Lawrence THOMAS (gk), 21.Carl VALERI (c), 23.Jai INGHAM (11.Mitch AUSTIN 78’)

Subtitutes not used: 40.Matt ACTON (gk), 16.Rashid MAHAZI

Cards:  No bookings to either team

February 19 February, 2017
Central Coast Stadium, Gosford  
Central Coast Mariners vs. Melbourne Victory  
Attendance: 7013
Referee: Daniel Elder