We can move on from Mile: Hutchinson

With regular partner Mile Jedinak in Turkey and on the cusp of re-launching his European career, Central Coast Mariners lynchpin and likely Jedinak successor John Hutchinson is convinced that the yellow and navy can recover from the loss of their star player.

With regular partner Mile Jedinak in Turkey and on the cusp of re-launching his European career, Central Coast Mariners lynchpin and likely Jedinak successor John Hutchinson is convinced that the yellow and navy can recover from the loss of their star player.

Hutchinson is one of many options available to assume Jedinak-s role in front of the Mariners backline - a position that the Qantas Socceroo fulfilled with such aplomb in his two Hyundai A-League seasons on the Central Coast.

"I don-t know if you can really cover a player like Mile, he-s an exceptional talent and he-s done so well at the club and deserves his move overseas," said Hutchinson.

"He-s going to be a huge loss for us, but we have got players that can play in that position and if they can do a job half as well as Mile did, it would be really good for the team."

Having celebrated the Mariners- New Year-s Eve triumph over the Perth Glory in the best possible fashion, midfield ace and club veteran Hutchinson has set his sights on a successful Hyundai A-League Premiership defence with the yellow and navy.

Hutchinson produced perhaps his personal highlight in Mariners colours against the Glory - an outstanding long-range goal in the dying stages that secured the Mariners their first back-to-back victory of the campaign.

Hutchinson-s candidate for the goal of the year was his second of season four and his twelfth in history of the Hyundai A-League, making the 29-year-old the Mariners- third highest Hyundai A-League goal scorer behind Adam Kwasnik (15) and Sasho Petrovski (14).

After Mariners captain Alex Wilkinson celebrated his 100th competitive appearance in yellow and navy on Boxing Day, Hutchinson is next in line to reach the century milestone having registered 87 competitive appearances for the Mariners to date.

"We can-t get carried away and look too far ahead, but the Queensland game is definitely one that we need to get some points from," said Hutchinson.

"We-re at home again so hopefully our Members and supporters can come out again and get us over the line.

"We-re taking it game by game, but if we get the three points against Queensland and then go down to Melbourne and get a positive result and hopefully we-ll be in a position to retain our Premiership."

The Mariners are back at Bluetongue Stadium on Saturday, 10 January when they host the Queensland Roar in Round 19 of the Hyundai A-League 2008/09 season. Kick off is at 7pm.

Tickets for this match are on sale from Ticketek outlets, from the Ticketek website - www.ticketek.com.au, or via phone on 132 849.