Scottish defender Ziggy Gordon’s return to Gosford for Central Coast’s A-League clash with Western Sydney Wanderers on Tuesday isn’t keeping Mariners stalwart Matt Simon awake at night.
Gordon joined the Wanderers in December, just a month after he’d agreed an extension with Central Coast to play for them in the 2020-21 season.
Despite his sudden exit, Simon wasn’t eyeing any particular kind of revenge when Gordon’s Wanderers take on the unbeaten Mariners.
“We’re just concentrating on ourselves and doesn’t matter who’s playing for them,” Simon said.
“To be honest we haven’t given Ziggy a thought since he’s left.”
The game will be Central Coast’s first since a 2-0 win over Macarthur FC on January 3, which made it two wins from two for Alen Stajcic’s team.
After three consecutive wooden spoons, the Mariners’ perfect start to the year has caught some by surprise, but not Gordon.
“I know first-hand how dangerous they are,” last season’s Mariners player of the year said.
“Over the course of last season I think the Mariners were very unfortunate in numerous games.
“It was just the final part of the game that we didn’t do well enough.
“Obviously in the last two games they’ve managed to rectify that in the two games with two wins.”
While the Mariners are well-rested, the Wanderers head go in to the game on the back of a bruising 1-1 draw with Sydney FC on Saturday.
Wanderers coach Carl Robinson says he will have to make changes to his starting XI but won’t be using the quick turnaround as any excuse for a poor display.
“The only consistency of the schedule is the inconsistency of it,” Robinson said.
“Coaches will complain when they don’t play for two-three weeks and coaches will complain when they play two-three games in a week.”
The Mariners have included Costa Rica international Marcos Urena in their squad but Stajcic believes he and fellow import Michal Janota still need more time to gain fitness before playing.
KEY MATCH STATS
* Western Sydney have lost just one of their past nine A-League matches against Central Coast.
* Central Coast’s five-game unbeaten run stretching back to last season is the longest for them since a nine-game run without defeat in 2013.
* Mariners striker Matt Simon has only managed three goals from 19 matches across his career against the Wanderers.