Roller-coaster continues for Stajcic as Mariners lay foundations

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Alen Stajcic has secured an F3 Derby win against the Newcastle Jets in his first game in charge of the Central Coast Mariners following his controversial axing from the Matildas job in January.

It was an incredible A-League debut for the 45-year-old, who oversaw an utterly ridiculous finish to the match.

It looked like the Mariners were about to bottle another lead, but two heroic penalty saves from Ben Kennedy secured the win.

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Stajcic was asked by journalists if the last few months have been the biggest roller-coaster of his life. He agreed.

“My individual circumstances and the club’s have probably paralleled each other in a lot of ways when you think about it,” he said.

“They’ve had a lot of ups and downs and so have I.”

The new coach insisted that the players should take all the credit for a very spirited performance. After gaining a 3-0 lead in the second half, the Jets looked likely to claw it back towards the end of the game, but the Mariners held strong.

“I’ve been here for one minute. Two training sessions.

“All the accolades really need to go to the players. I’d like to have a magic wand and be able to do that in 2 sessions all the time, but it really has to go down to what they players produced on the pitch.”

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Moving forward, Stajcic was vague about his role at the club and said he was completely focused on the short term.

“There are so many things we have to focus on and think about. So many elements of the club, the team, on the field, off the field – so to worry about what’s gonna happen in three months time is really just losing energy.”

It’s unlikely that Stajcic will be coaching the Mariners in the 2019/20 A-League season.

“Our aim is to show we have a good foundation to build the team for next year, for whoever’s going to be here.”

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Harry Keating
Harry Keating
Intern at The Football Sack covering The Newcastle Jets A-League and W-League home matches!

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