Hyundai A-League - 2010/2011 - Season 6

Reds hold Coast to draw
By Corinthian

2010/2011 Hyundai A-League - Round 2
3:00pm, Sunday 15 August, 2010
at Central Coast Stadium, Gosford

Central Coast Mariners FC 1
(Matt Simon 84')
drew with
Adelaide United FC 1
(Iain Fyfe 45'+1)

(Olly Bozanic (CCM) clears ball off Matthew Leckie (AU) - Photo by Chris Dunkerley for BOTN)

The new A League season brought a crowd of 8.447 to Bluetongue Stadium, Gosford, for the first home game of the Central Coast Mariners, who had won their opening game in Melbourne against newcomers Melbourne Heart 1-0.

Adelaide had struggled to a 0-0 draw against Newcastle Jets for new coach Rini Coolen and provided some decent and experienced opposition here for the Mariners and their similarly new coach, Graham Arnold.

That it finished 1-1 should come as no surprise given the caution both sides may have been expected to show so early in the season under new coaches but that's not the way the game panned out at all, really.

On a sunny, blustery day down by the water's edge, the first half was full of gusto and hard running by both sides with flankers from both outfits holding sway.

If it wasn't debut making Central Coast left back Joshua Rose marauding past defender-after-defender as he and gifted wingman, Oliver Bozanic, combined superbly to threaten Adelaide's experienced backline every time they came forward, which was often, then it was Lucas Pantelis posing similar problems for Brad Porter and co.

It was exciting to watch and were it not for the frame of the goal and the brilliance of Adelaide's national squad member, goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic, the home side may well have recorded their first home win of the season and an emphatic one at that.

The early stages of the match provided plenty of excitement at either end with a stream of crosses or shots flying across the face of the Mariners' goal and giving Central Coast keeper, Jess Van Strattan, and his defensive colleagues several sighs of relief as the ball missed its intended target by mere inches.

Sergio van Dijk, leading the Adelaide line, had a quiet game but did race through to seize an opportunity presented by a nice pass from Adam Hughes but the assistant's flag meant his tapping the ball home would not count in the seventh minute.,

Mariners' fans were certainly on the edge of their seats a minute later when Oliver Bozanic got past his man down the left and sent over a great cross to the far post where it was nodded back by Matt Simon.

Daniel McBreen latched onto the ball, but his close range effort came back off the underside of the crossbar and nobody could pick up the crumbs.

Adelaide defender Daniel Mullen got on the end of a move involving Matthew Leckie and Iain Fyfe in the tenth minute but the shot flew just wide, as it was to do several times later in the first half.

Brad Porter's free kick in the 16th was superbly tipped over by Galekovic who had an outstanding game as usual.

Another lucky escape for the Mariners came soon after that with Hughes setting up Adelaide captain, Lucas Pantelis, with a chance again that saw the ball sent screaming past the right hand upright.

A superb run down the right by Leckie in the 27th led to a ball squared right across the park, some 30 yards out from goal, giving Pantelis another chance, but once again he was off target and the shadows of the post were as close as he came to scoring.

Van Dijk laid on a nice pass for Leckie in the 37th but the speedy Adelaide man just failed to reach the ball in time to convert the chance.

Adelaide enjoyed a good spell shortly before the break with Van Strattan called upon to tip over a strong shot from Pantelis in the 44th.

As stoppage-time loomed, a mere minute, surprisingly, considering the number of players who had needed treatment in the first half, Adelaide fashioned the opening goal of the game.

A free kick was awarded to Adelaide deep on the right and close to the touchline.

Pantelis lifted it towards the near post and among a bunch of players Reds' defender Iain Fyfe emerged with no Central Coast man tracking him through thus leaving the former Sydney FC player the simple task of tapping home for an unexpected lead.

Stung by that shock Central Coast showed far more commitment in the second half and eventually snatched a late and deserved goal themselves to secure a precious point.

It was Matt Simon who found the ball at his feet in the six yard box wide on the left to angle home with some power and find the far corner of the net to the delight of home fans.

Before that there had been plenty of bright play by both teams, though the Mariners created the better chances.

In the 55th Daniel McBreen, McGlinchey and Bozanic combined to test Galekovic from 12 yards out with the shot from the latter, who had a great game at left midfield, tipped over magnificently by Galekovic with lightning reflexes.

There was an even better save by Galekovic in the 66th who saw his point blank drive superbly pushed away by the keeper.

Simon then set up McGlinchey in the 72nd with a cross that the latter steered narrowly wide of the left hand upright.

A 73rd minute volley by the continually impressive Bozanic flashed over the bar before Cassio and then Hughes were called upon to head off the Adelaide line to deny chances that resulted from a corner on the right three minutes later by John Hutchinson.

It was a strong home showing by the Mariners who share the competition lead with Perth Glory and North Queensland Fury on four points after two games.

When talented Argentinean midfielder, Patricio Perez, is fit the Central Coast side could be able to improve still further.

As for Adelaide, yet to record a win for new coach Rini Coolen, they'll be hoping that their redoubtable striker, Travis Dodd, and some of their absent defenders, like Nigel Boogaard and Robert Cornthwaite, can recover from injuries and give them more flair up front and defensive steel, respectively.

Central Coast Graham Arnold was upbeat in his first home game media conference, despite the draw. “I thought that in the first half we were very flat, but in saying that we did create some good chances. It was very disappointing to concede that goal right on halftime. We had to change things in that second half and I thought we showed good attitude to get ourselves back into the match,” Arnold said.

Arnold was happy with his defence, despite Adelaide getting in behind a number of times during the first half, saying that "'The Dutchman [Zwaanswijk] was great today and with Wilko, I'm confident enough in saying those two are making the best central defensive duo in the league,''

He was also pleased with others among his newer squad members, “I thought Bozanic was outstanding today, and for Josh Rose’s debut we couldn’t ask for anything more from him.”

Mariners captain Alex Wilkinson was disappointed that his side had let two points go begging. “Its very frustrating; its like we had two different teams out there today. In that first half we were lethargic and weren’t doing the work for each other on or off the ball. In the end though 1-nil down with ten minutes to go, and we managed to get back into it That is one of our strong traits, and we’ve got to be happy with that,” he added.

Reds new Dutch coach Rini Coolen was particularly impressed by his team’s first half performance, but he knew the Mariners would respond strongly and said United would learn from the result. “At the end you’re happy with one point. Before the game, if you’re playing away, a result like this is not negative but we came for three points and in the first half we did well, we created a number of chances,” Coolen said.

He noted that, “When a team is playing at home, they will change a few things with the way they play at half time, we knew that and we had to look at ways to try and keep possession and wait longer for the chance to score a second goal.”

Acting Red's captain Lucas Pantelis indicated that the Mariners fighting qualities always meant that they were in for a torrid time late in the game, and that Graham Arnold's changes at the 60th minute were critical.

2010/2011 Hyundai A-League - Round 2
3:00pm, Sunday 15 August, 2010
at Central Coast Stadium, Gosford

Central Coast Mariners FC 1
(Matt Simon 84')

drew with
Adelaide United FC 1
(Iain Fyfe 45'+1)

    Crowd: 8,447


    Central Coast Mariners FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Jess Van Stratten (gk), 18. Alex Wilkinson (c), 3. Joshua Rose, 6. Patrick Zwaanswijk, 5. Brad Porter (4. Pedj Bojic), 7. John Hutchinson, 11. Oliver Bozanic, 14. Michael McGlinchey, 19. Matt Simon, 23. Adam Kwasnik (8. Rostyn Griffiths +60'), 2. Daniel McBreen (9. Nik Mrdja +71')
    Substitutes not used: 20. Matthew Ryan (rgk)

    Coach: Graham Arnold

    Yellow Cards: Joshua Rose 18', 6. Patrick Zwaanswijk 70', Oliver Bozanic 90'+4
    Red Cards: Nil

    Adelaide United FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Eugene GALEKOVIC (gk), 4. Iain FYFE, 5. Daniel MULLEN, 6. CASSIO, 7. Lucas PANTELIS (c), 8. Adam HUGHES, 9. Sergio van DIJK (15. Francsco MONTEROSSO +90'+4), 10. Marcos FLORES (17.Iain RAMSAY +71'), 12. Paul REID, 16. Inseob SHIN (24. Cameron WATSON +68'), 19. Mathew LECKIE
    Substitutes not used: 30. Mark Birighitti (rgk)

    Coach: Rini Coolen

    Yellow Cards: Adam Hughes 15', 86', Daniel Mullen 36', Eugene Galekovic 87''
    Red Cards: Adam Hughes 86'

    Referee: Kris Griffiths Jones 6/10
    Assistants: Ben Wilson, Sarah Ho; Fourth Official: Stuart Wolfe; Match Commissioner: Craig McCallum

    BOTN Player Points:
    3. Eugene Galekovic (AU)
    2. Patrick Zwaanswijk (CCM)
    1. Joshua Rose (CCM)

    Pitch rating: 8/10

    Game rating: 7/10

    Match Report and ratings: Corinthian

Special Picture Gallery (All for BOTN by Chris Dunkerley)

(Team shake hands prior to the match)

(Graham Arnold checking for snipers)

(Adelaide fans)

(Yellow Army and others)

(Alex Wilkinson & Graham Arnold)

(Graham Arnold)

(Rini Coolen - Adelaide coach )

Disclaimer: The content of this report is the responsibility of the writer. Stats are either as recorded by the writer at the game, or as supplied by FFA, or a mixture - no responsibility can be taken for their compete accuracy although we do strive for that. FFA has not this season accredited any Photographers for BOTN, so any photos used here, unless attributed, are as supplied by FFA and used by permission.

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