Arnold reveals Mariners target

07 February 2013 06:46:47 EST
Mariners midfielder Oliver Bozanic.

Coach Graham Arnold has challenged Central Coast Mariners to reach the 50-point mark in the A-League this season.

He believes if the club can make it to the half-century, they will be crowned champions for the first time.

Though they are one of the most consistent sides in A-League history, the Mariners have yet to claim the championship title.

But Arnold has backed his players to content with the dual pursuit of A-League glory and an Asian Champions League campaign.

He said: "I have challenged the boys to get to 50 points if we get over 50 points I think we will go close to being the champions again, otherwise it is one game at a time."

Last season, Central Coast won their second Premiership as they finished two points clear of Brisbane Roar at the top of the A-League table.

They were unable to carry that form over into the Finals Series, though, as they lost 2-0 away to the Roar in week one of the semi-finals, losing 3-2 to Brisbane in week two. They held Perth Glory 1-1 in the preliminary final only to go out 5-3 on penalties.

The next three months is sure to test the Mariners to the limit.

Arnold's side have eight more A-League rounds before the Finals Series next month, play four ACL matches before the A-League Grand Final and two more in the 10 days after.

"We have got an exciting two months ahead of us with the end of the A-League but also ACL and the boys are in great spirits," said Arnold.

"Last season is history, I think we are a better side than what we were last year, we have much more depth this year."
Central Coast are 2/1 to win the A-League Grand Final and Melbourne Victory are 5/1 to take the top prize.

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