Melbourne City dominate Mariners in Lismore

By Chris Dunkerley:

Preseason Game
Hyundai A-League Season 10 – 2014/15
2:30pm, Sunday 7 September, 2014 – Oakes Oval, Lismore

Central Coast Mariners FC  1
(Malick Mann 57‘ pen)
drew with
Melbourne City FC  1
(Rob Wielaert 56′)

Central Coast Mariners FC held Melbourne City FC, formerly Heart, to a 1-1 draw in Lismore in a preseason game on Sunday 7 September, 2014.

The Melbourne side showed their more in depth pre-season preparation (having not been in the ACL) and fitness, keeping possession and shape throughout, and only two subs.

The Mariners on their part rung in 10 changes during the game, with only first choice ‘keeper Liam Reddy seeing out the time.
City dominated the first half, with a possession stat that could have approached 80% and most of that in the Mariners half.  Central Coast was resolute in defence, marshalled by Liam Reddy and Eddy Bosnar, but whenever they tried to play out they either gave away possession or were pressed off the ball.

Early on Massimo Murdocca played a ball through the defence for Marc Marino, but was easy cleaning up for Reddy. he then smothered a dropping free kick into the area from the left by Iain Ramsay, and a ground shot.

In the 36th minute the Coast actually got into an attacking position but couldn’t penetrate.

The best chance of the half, to City of course, was in the 41st minute when a shot on target couldn’t be held by a diving Reddy, but it was cleared on the goal-line by a defender, I believe trialist Daniell Zeleny.

Changes in the second half by the Mariners settled the game somewhat, and in the first minute Isaka Cernak should have done better when one on one with Andrew Redmayne in the City goal.  City might have grabbed a lead it Damian Duff had done better in lobbing Reddy, from a ball over the defence in the 50th minute.

City gained a well deserved lead in the 56th minute when a free kick just out from the penalty area, on the right, was cut square to Rob Weilaert, who picked out the the top right corner of the goal. 0-1

Just as the scattering of travelling City fans were celebrating, an attack down the right broke down when Mariners midfielder Antony Caceres was brought down, judged illegally, just inside the area.  The penalty was taken cleanly by Malick Mane for the Mariners, and it was 1-1.

Probably the best chance in general play came in the  71st minute when  Richard Vernes directed a cross toward goal, with Redmayne well out. Alas the ball just cleared the left post.

The game ended in a draw, but it was really one that Melbourne should have won. They looked good. The Mariners just looked underdone, though their trialists (what we saw of them) looked useful.

The result means the clubs share the 2014 Craig Foster Cup named in honour of one of Lismore’s football exports, former Socceroo and SBS chief football analyst, Craig  Foster, who was on hand to meet the crowd and present the trophy.

Mariners coaches comments:

“I’m not overly disappointed with the first half,” Mariners coach Phil Moss said post match. “I think defensively it was a fantastic exercise, because we couldn’t get hold of the ball. Melbourne City controlled the first half, there’s no doubt about that, and that’s on the back of some very big sessions for us this week.”
“The objective for the week for us was to get some real training loads into the boys. We’ve been hampered by wet weather back home, so to come here and have the sun shine and a great training facility, we really put some miles into the boys legs on the training pitch and second half I think we start to see the fruits of that labour with the ball.”
“First half I was happy with the exercise and we probably got real benefit match fitness wise because we were chasing the ball for long periods.”
Indeed, Moss said that he expected City to be in hot form given the sheer amount of competitive matches their squad has already played, combined with the chance to utilise Manchester City’s training facilities for three weeks and venture to a camp in the Northern Territory.
“If you look at it in the cold hard light of day they (Melbourne City) have probably played eight really competitive games and that was out first really competitive game if you don’t take into account the FFA Cup,” he said. “So overall I am really happy with where we are at and to come home with a wet sail in the second half physically was good. There was some patches of real quality in the second half in the way that we played with the ball.”
Moss was also pleased with the contributions of his two new foreign players – Mané who started the match, and Richard Vernes who came on as a substitute in the second 45.
“They needed a run and Richie wasn’t ready to start the game, Malick was,” he said. “We got 60 good minutes out of Malick and he will be better for the run both from a physical point view and his understanding tactically.”
“Richie came on second half and showed some real quality and probably could have had two or maybe three goals.”

The Mariners returned to the Central Coast via the Gold Coast on Monday, and have fixtures against Brisbane Roar (friendly), Olympic FC (Westfield FFA Cup), and Newcastle Jets (friendly) – all away – coming up over the next fortnight.

The Mariners again teamed up with Central Coast company, VPA Productions, to provide a live stream option to supporters via the Club’s website.

MATCH STATS:

Crowd: about 4,000   (10% of the district’s adult population)

Central Coast Mariners FC
Player listing:   12. Liam Reddy (gk), 3. Joshua Rose (24. Jake McGing (T) +75′), 7. John Hutchinson (c) (8. Nick Montgomery +46′), 14. Malick Mane 9. Mitchell Duke (+63′), 17. Anthony Caceres (20. Anthony Kalik +71′), 22. Tom Slater (18. Micheal Neill +46′), 25. Eddy Bosnar (33. Nick Petrillo (T) +77′), 26 Kim Seoung-Yong (23. Mason Versi (T) +73′), 27. Isaka Cernak (4. Richard Vernes +63′),  29. Matthew Sim (13. Hayden Morton +63′), 21. Daniel Zelenyi (Trialist) (5. Zachary Anderson +46′)

Substitutes not used: 1. Adam Pearce (rgk)(T)

Coach: Phil Moss
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards:  Nil

Melbourne City FC
Player listing:   1. Andrew Redmayne (gk), 3. Rob Weilaert, 6. Aaron Mooy, 7. Iain Ramsay, 8. Massimo Murdocca, 10. Rob Koren, 11. Damian Duff, 23. Mate Dugandzic (14. James Brown +53′), 24. Patrick Kisnorbo (c), 25. Jacob Melling, 32. Marc Marino (?+53′), 26. Ross Archibald (T)(+53′)

Substitutes not used:  33. Wade Dekker (T)(rgk), 4. Nick Symeoy (T),  22. Tom King (T)

Coach:  John van’t Schip
Yellow Cards: Ptrick Kisnorbo 75′
Red Cards:  Nil

Ratings:
Referee:  Jarred Gillett  8/10
Assistants: tba; 4th official: tba

BOTN Player Points:  na
Pitch rating:  7/10 – quite reasonable for a cricket oval in ”the bush”
Game rating: 5/10

By Chris Dunkerley (thanks to CCMFC media for access at the ground, and the coaches quotes above)

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