Central Coast Mariners coach Graham Arnold has urged his side to begin their games in a much stronger fashion if they want to mix it with the top few teams.
The Mariners did enough to record a 1-0 home win over Wellington Phoenix yesterday but Arnold wants improvement from his third-placed side as they approach the business end of the season.
“If we want to take our game to the next level we need to start better than we did tonight,” said Arnold.
“After those first six minutes I thought there was only one team in it scoring goals. We were calm throughout the match, and handled the situation pretty well.”
But Arnold was delighted that his side were able to notch up their tenth match of the season without conceding a goal.
“That’s ten clean sheets from 22 games, and we build our formation around our defence, and teams find it hard to break us down,” he added.
“The progress of this team has been enormous, and I’m very proud of where we are at, but the boys know there is still plenty of improvement left in them.
“We’ve got a tough game now against Brisbane on Wednesday, and we’re looking forward to it.”