Hyundai A-League - 2011/2012 - Season 7

Mariners win again
.. with controversy
By Chris Dunkerley

2011/2012 Hyundai A-League - Round 8
5:30pm, Saturday 26 November, 2011
at Bluetongue Central Coast Stadium, Gosford

Central Coast Mariners FC 3
(Matt Simon 45', Daniel McBreen 81', Patrick Zwaanswijk 87')
Melbourne Heart FC 1
(Eli Babalj 78')

(linked from FFA web site)

Central Coast have retained their place in second spot on the Hyundai A-League table following a 3-1 win over the Melbourne Heart at Bluetongue Stadium in Gosford on Saturday night, albeit with a little controversy.

Matt Simon put the Mariners in front in first-half injury time before the Heart rallied brilliantly in the second half to equalise through replacement Eli Babalj in the 78th minute.

But the Mariners went ahead in the 81st minute when referee Gerard Parsons awarded the home team a penalty for handball in the box.

Veteran Daniel McBreen stepped up and made no mistake from the spot kick.

With time almost up Patrick Zwaanswijk then finished off the match when he headed home a corner in the 87th minute.

Simon pounced to score the Mariners first goal, and his third goal of the campaign, after captain Alex Wilkinson won a header from a Michael McGlinchey corner.

Apart from the excitement in injury time it was a relatively non-eventful first half.

Ibini was in the thick of the action throughout the half.

He had a shot well blocked in the ninth minute and then could do little as a goalbound shot from John Hutchinson struck him on the leg with Bolton beaten after 32 minutes.

Mariners goalkeeper Justin Pasfield had little to do in the first half but the Heart were still dangerous in patches.

Matt Thompson had a good chance in the 22nd minute before sending a low shot wide of the target.

Despite playing away from home the Heart had the better of play early in the second half.

While Pasfield did not have to make a save for long periods, the visitors looked dangerous moving forward and put the Mariners in-form defence under consistent pressure.

Second-half replacement David Williams nearly scored with his first touch of the ball in the 58th minute when he headed a Thompson cross just wide of the posts.

The Mariners were guilty of failing to hold on to the ball throughout the second half and were made to pay a heavy price.

Maycon showed his class in the 73rd minute with a stinging shot that need a good save from Pasfield but the Mariners goalkeeper was beaten five minutes later when Babalj scored the equaliser from a free kick.

When Patrick Zwaanswijk scored in the 87th minute the home fans could relax.

After the game Mariners Coach Graham Arnold emphasised that the biggest positive he could take from the match was that despite his team not playing to their full capacity, they still earned three crucial Hyundai A-League points.

The biggest positive is that when you dont play well you still win, Arnold said.

One thing I always know is that I can never walk into the dressing room and be angry with them for not putting an effort in because they die on the field for me. And when they do that they keep themselves in with a great chance of winning, he said.

Captain Alex Wilkinson took to the pitch for the 150th time in the A-League, all for the Mariners. Wilkinson said that while his 150th appearance is a great personal milestone, he was more concerned with his side earning the three competition points.

Its a great milestone something that you look back on at the end of your career, but its more important for three points tonight and Im just glad we got them, Wilkinson said.

To get two late goals is fantastic. The team spirit and the character that weve got is fantastic and thats what got us through tonight.

Frustrated coach John van 't Schip was full of praise for his players after watching his Melbourne Heart team lose. ""The referees have a big influence in some games," the Heart coach said in the post match press conference. "These are really big decisions they make. The referee can't see everything but Clint was getting held by Simon. It was not a corner anyway, it was two things in a row."

"You can't change it. We made it very difficult for them, the team is growing. Coming from behind is difficult but the last 30 minutes before the penalty we were getting better and better."

2011/2012 Hyundai A-League - Round 8
5:30pm, Saturday 26 November, 2011
at Bluetongue Central Coast Stadium, Gosford

Central Coast Mariners FC 3
(Matt Simon 45', Daniel McBreen 81', Patrick Zwaanswijk 87')
Melbourne Heart FC 1
(Eli Babalj 78')

    Crowd: 7,242


    Central Coast Mariners FC :
    Player listing:
    20. Justin PASFIELD (gk), 3. Joshua ROSE, 4. Pedj BOJIC, 6. Patrick ZWAANSWIJK, 7. John HUTCHINSON, 8. Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 9. Bernie IBINI (12. Troy HEARFIELD +57), 14. Michael McGLINCHEY, 18. Alex WILKINSON (c), 19. Matt SIMON (10. Adriano PELLEGRINO +85), 22. Mustafa AMINI (2. Daniel McBREEN +71)
    Substitutes not used: 30. Nathan DENHAM (rgk)

    Coach: Graham Arnold

    Yellow Cards: Patrick Zwaanswijk 27'
    Red Cards: Nil

    Melbourne Heart FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Clint BOLTON (gk), 2. Michael MARRONE, 3. Brendan HAMILL, 5. FRED (c), 6. Matthew THOMPSON (16. Aziz BEHIC +71), 7. Rutger WORM (19. Eli BABALJ +64), 9. MAYCON, 10. Wayne SRHOJ (15. David WILLIAMS +57), 13. Jonatan GERMANO, 18. Curtis GOOD, 25. Adrian MADASCHI
    Substitutes not used: 30. Sebastian MATTEI (rgk)

    Coach: John vant Schip

    Yellow Cards: Wayne Srhoj 40'
    Red Cards: Nil

    Referee: Gerard Parsons /10
    Assistant referees: Murray Wilson, Allyson Flynn ; Fourth official: Stuart Wolfe

    BOTN Player Points:
    3. tba
    2. tba
    1. tba

    Pitch rating: 8/10

    Game rating: 6/10

    Match Report and ratings: By Chris Dunkerley (assisted by FIFA and club media releases)

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. Any photos used here, unless attributed, are as implicitly supplied by FFA and used by assumed permission.

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