Keepers Confirmed: Pearce re-signs & Gauci gained

Keepers Confirmed: Pearce re-signs & Gauci gained

The Central Coast Mariners can today confirm that the club’s goalkeeping stocks have been secured for the upcoming season with Adam Pearce signing a contract extension and 17-year-old Joe Gauci arriving from Adelaide.

21-year-old Pearce first joined the Central Coast Mariners set up as a 17-year-old and has earned a contract extension that will see him remain in Yellow & Navy until at least the end of the 2018/19 season. After a successful trial with the Mariners, Joe Gauci has earned a two-year-scholarship with the club.

During the Hyundai A-League off-season Pearce has earned valuable game time with the high-flying Mariners NPL Team, making 15 appearances for the side that currently sit in second place.

Gauci makes a life-changing move to the Central Coast from NPL South Australia club, West Torrens Birkalla SC after signing his first professional contract. The 17-year-old is also completing his South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) in year 12 at the Sacred Heart College.

The young duo join reigning Mariners Medalist, Ben Kennedy as the club’s three Hyundai A-League goalkeepers this season after ‘BK’ activated a one-year-contract-extension, appearing 23 times between the sticks for the Mariners last season.

Central Coast Mariners Goalkeeping Coach, Matt Nash spoke of his excitement to work with the three talented shot-stoppers this season.

“I’m really happy for Pearcey who has worked hard over the past four years at the club and been very patient,” Nash said. “He’s been playing very well in the NPL and is maturing very quickly as a good young goalkeeper. I know him very well as a person and his goal is to one day be the number one keeper at the Mariners – he is very driven and will fight hard for that spot.

“As a 17-year-old, Joe [Gauci] has a great attitude and been playing regular football in the SA NPL with men. He’s a great attacking goalkeeper which is what I like to see and he has maturity beyond his years.

“I’ve been lucky enough to work with the three together when we had Joe up for a week and they all worked really well together. I think it will be a great goalkeeping union here on the Coast with them all pushing each other and all three of them keen to play,” Nash said.

Upon signing his contract extension, Pearce spoke about the mentorship of both Matt Nash and Ben Kennedy.

“It’s been an incredible three years with Nashy, and before that with John Crawley,” Pearce said. “To be granted an opportunity with the first team again this season is something I am really grateful for heading into the season.

“It’s a dream for me to be the number one keeper at the club but as a 21-year-old I am just taking every day as it comes and trying my best to learn every day so when I am granted an opportunity I am ready to take it with both hands. ‘BK’ has been great with me, he’s always there for me as a mentor which I really appreciate,” Pearce said.

After signing his maiden professional contract, Gauci says it’s a dream come true and can’t wait to get started on day one of pre-season with the Mariners.

“I’m really excited – like any young footballer it’s always been a dream of mine to earn a professional contract,” Gauci said. “At such a young age to get this opportunity in the A-League is fantastic for me, my family and everyone else who has supported me along the journey.

“I can’t wait to get in and start working with BK, Nashy, Pearcey and the rest of the squad where I know I can really develop as a player and a person. The week I’ve already spent at the Mariners was fantastic I felt really comfortable with the guys, they welcomed me with open arms.

“For me – I am going to training from 2-3 times a week to now training full time in a professional environment is amazing. I can’t wait to get going,” Gauci said.

The Central Coast Mariners commence their first pre-season training session on Thursday, 21 June at Pluim Park.

Central Coast Mariners Squad
Goalkeepers: Joe GAUCI, Ben KENNEDY, Adam PEARCE
Defenders: Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, Jack CLISBY, Antony GOLEC, Jake McGING, Kye ROWLES
Midfielders: Adam BERRY, Danny De SILVA, Tom HIARIEJ, Jacob MELLING, Mario SHABOW
Attackers: Corey GAMEIRO, Andrew HOOLE, Connor PAIN, Matt SIMON

FFA Formally Respond to Mariners W-League Submission

FFA Formally Respond to Mariners W-League Submission

Central Coast Mariners FC

The Central Coast Mariners can today advise that Football Federation Australia have formally responded to the club’s submission to be re-introduced to the Westfield W-League.

Last month the Hyundai A-League Club ownership group, The Australian Professional Football Clubs Association (APFCA), made a submission to Football Federation Australia (FFA) in support of the Central Coast Mariners re-introduction to the 2018/19 Westfield W-League (WWL) season.

APFCA have since received a formal response from Football Federation Australia which outlines the governing body’s immediate areas for investment regarding the WWL. The letter implies that these priorities do NOT include the expansion of the competition to 10 teams.

In Football Federation Australia’s letter to APFCA the following two initiatives have been identified as their most immediate priorities for to the WWL:

   1. Broadcast and live streaming of all WWL matches and
   2. Delivering a full home and away schedule

Whilst Central Coast Mariners and APFCA support further FFA investment in the WWL and W-League clubs, both organisations believe the Mariners immediate inclusion in the WWL should be considered as a separate topic that will grow the women’s game and talent pool immediately rather than an opportunity that needs to wait in line.

The Central Coast Mariners strongly believe that the addition of a Mariners W-League team would positively contribute to Australian female football development by providing:

  1. Elimination of the competition’s ‘bye round’
  2. Increased professional opportunities for elite female footballers
  3. Increased professional playing opportunities for young Matildas (who currently struggle for game time with the existing nine WWL clubs)
  4. Expansion of WWL without overlapping with overseas female football leagues (such as the NWSL)  5. 
  5. Improve Australia’s chances of hosting and winning the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup by widening the country’s talent pool
  6. Only the second complete professional female football development pathway in the country. The Mariners are one of only two professional football clubs in Australia to offer a women’s          pathway, starting from the U10 SAP to first grade NPL. A Mariners W-League team completes the football landscape for boys and girls on the Central Coast
  7. Ability to increase attendances at Central Coast Stadium through A-League/W-League double headers (significant government investment has gone towards constructing additional change rooms to facilitate this in response to FFA’s feedback last year about this being a necessity for Mariners’ future W-League inclusion)
  8. The Central Coast is the only region with no competing national sports – with no NRL, AFL, Netball or BBL in the area, the Central Coast could be the true “heartland of football”
  9. Increased community engagement by providing more role models for young girls and harness the committed corporate support ready to invest.

Central Coast Mariners Chairman, Mike Charlesworth responded to FFA’s letter with the following comments:

“I’m bewildered by Football Federation Australia’s position,” Charlesworth said. “Their decision is based around a lack of talent in the country – despite the fact that we have arguably the best academy and pathway for girls in Australia with approximately 100 girls on the Central Coast working hard to become a Matilda one day.

“If FFA want to develop women’s football, they should be working with us, not restricting us, all at a time when Australia is bidding to host the Women’s World cup in 2023.

“If FFA are deviating from their own Whole of Football Plan, then what is their plan?” Charlesworth said.

Central Coast Mariners CEO, Shaun Mielekamp also spoke about the Mariners’ passion to help the women’s game in Australia grow.

“The FFA have written to APFCA and confirmed that the priorities for the W-League this season are to increase the broadcast and expand to a full home and away competition before permitting our re-entry and removing the bye round,” Mielekamp said. “We agree that broadcast improvements and a full home and away season [that does not negatively impact players playing overseas] are priorities that should be achieved; however, we simply can’t see why our re-entry must wait until these other priorities are implemented.

“We will take FFA’s feedback on board and we are arranging a visit from key FFA staff to ensure they see with their own eyes just how far we have progressed our Academy and the great job the Central Coast Council has done in improving facilities at the stadium.

“We will continue to push our case for immediate re-entry and if the FFA aren’t going to expand the competition to a full home and away season – then the question we’re asking is what does next season look like and what will be done to grow the women’s game in the immediate future?”

Central Coast Mariners have been left confused by FFA’s response to the Mariners WWL bid which contradicts the governing body’s own 2015 Whole of Football plan.

Page 87 of the document states:

“At a minimum, every top tier club in Australia should have an A-League team and a W-League team. This is important because: Unlike every other Australian sport, football clubs will be able to connect to their communities by providing male and female role models. Above everything else, football fans appreciate good football and the W-League is top quality football that attracts male and female fans. Furthermore, having an A-League and W-League team will allow clubs to host more top quality double headers.”

APFCA and Central Coast Mariners will continue to seek the Mariners inclusion into the WWL 2018/19 Season as a matter of priority and call on FFA to implement a clear strategy for the development of the WWL, including the re-introduction of Central Coast Mariners as a 10th team, that aligns with the Whole of Football plan.

Key Quotes from Mariners W-League Ambassadors, Julie Dolan & Dan Barrett.

Julie Dolan (FFA Hall of Fame inductee and Mariners W-League Ambassador)

“Football Federation Australia’s current position is disappointing for the Central Coast and fans of women’s football,” Dolan said. “Women’s football, and women’s sport in general is experiencing unprecedented success, support, media and corporate backing and it would seem an opportune moment to further build the W-League through the inclusion of a Mariners W-League team.

“I trust the FFA now intends to use its resources to resolve any issues they see as impediments to the launch of a Central Coast Mariners W-League team,” Dolan said.

Dan Barrett (Mariners Women’s NPL Head Coach and W-League Ambassador)

"A club like the Mariners with a purpose built female development program and pathway only adds to this talent pool. I can tell you from being on the ground, we have good young players here that deserve this opportunity. They should have the opportunity to be nurtured in their own backyard with hunger to compete for their home club in front of family and friends,” Barrett said.

Mariners offer $5000 Prize Pool for esports Competition

Central Coast Mariners

Mariners offer $5000 Prize Pool for esports Competition  

The Central Coast Mariners (CCM) and Digital Sporting Group (DSG) have teamed up to launch the Central Coast Mariners Digital Football League, a landmark competition where competitors have the chance to claim their share of a $5000 prize pool.Starting as a digital competition (Playstation®4 & Xbox One) between June 18 & July 14 the finalists will be invited to a play-off in Sydney where the winner will be crowned the undisputed CCM Digital Football LeagueChampion at a live event on Saturday July 14. The winners on each console will claim a cash prize.The inaugural ‘CCM Digital Football League’ is the first esports tournament to be ran by a Hyundai A-League club with a plan to grow and connect with millions of esports athletes across the globe.

Places are strictly limited, to enter CLICK HERE

Central Coast Mariners Owner, Mike Charlesworth has been working closely with DSG to build a tournament that will connect millions of esports players under the Mariners banner and is excited by what the future holds in the esports landscape.

"Last season the E-League was a pivotal success,” Charlesworth said. “It engaged millions of spectators across the globe and we need to capitalise on this and see what else we can do. “In partnership with Digital Sports Group, we're accelerating the growth of competitive gaming through the CCM Digital Football League, producing more competition, attracting more competitors and offering a cash incentive. “This is the first of hopefully many esports competitions we can run at the Central Coast Mariners and we’re passionate to lead the way in this space,” Charlesworth said.

Digital Sports Group is an Australian owned esports organisation with a mantra to create esports for all. Their aim is to increase the talent pool of esports by providing clear pathways from couch to pro whilst providing an opportunity for people to play competitively and make money from their hobby. DSG’s Managing Director and Founder, Jon Rowe spoke about the growth in esports and is committed to helping the Central Coast Mariners become an industry leader.

“The Mariners came to us with a very clear direction to become one of Australia’s leading esports clubs,” Rowe said. “We are excited to partner with them to manage the cross over from traditional sports into esports. “Our collective goal is to make esports accessible to people from all walks of life.

“Esports is a US$900M industry growing at a rate of 38% year-on-year. E-Football is the next great frontier of esports and Digital Football League will be at the forefront,” Rowe said.

DSG have also secured the services of: Nathan Patrick (@N8nathanpatrick) Jarrad Nance (@JarradHD) and The Master Bucks (@TheMasterBucks) to commentate the finals series in Sydney.

DSG are determined to attract the best FIFA talent in the country to take part and notable players such as: Matthew Camilleri (Central Coast Mariners/StrawHat_Camels), Jamie O'Doherty (Adelaide United/FUTWIZ), David Cook (Perth Glory/HighFly357), Marcus Gomes (Melbourne City/SoccerStar00777), have already signed on to compete in the inaugural Central Coast Mariners Digital Football League.

*Eligibility restrictions apply. CLICK HERE to view the competition’s full terms and conditions. Final terms and structure subject to change.

**Online qualification for ultimate team mode is only available to eligible players on PlayStation 4. & Xbox One. No other platforms are supported for qualification.

*** FIFA 18 © 2017 Electronic Arts Inc. EA, EA Sports and Ultimate Team are trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc.  FIFA 18 is an Official FIFA licensed product © FIFA and FIFA logo are copyrights/trademarks of FIFA.  All rights reserved.  All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

To stay updated with the competition, follow via the following social media platforms:


Mariners farewell El Capitán, Alan Baró

Mariners farewell El Capitán, Alan Baró

Central Coast Mariners Media Release

The Central Coast Mariners can today advise that Alan Baró will return to Spain with his family to pursue other opportunities.

Baró signed a two-year-deal with the Mariners in May 2017 but has today agreed to a mutual termination of his contract with the Club which will allow him to return to his homeland.

Announced as the Club’s fifth Captain last September, Baró led the team into battle 24 times.

Alan thanked the Central Coast Mariners for their ongoing support and welcoming his family with open arms.

“I feel sad to be leaving,” Baro said. “I have nothing but positive things to say about this club, the Coast, the community and all of the fans.

“Me and my family were treated so well here on the Central Coast and I leave Australia with many close friends because the Central Coast is one of the best places we’ve ever lived.

“It was a difficult season and we didn’t get the results we deserved – but at the Mariners there are a fantastic group of people at the club who I am confident will take this club forward.

“Despite those results – the support of the Mariners fans and community was amazing and I can’t thank them enough for that. I want to take this opportunity to thank the fans, the club and the Central Coast community for their ongoing support and making our time on the Central Coast very enjoyable,” Baró said.

The Central Coast Mariners thank Baró for his efforts and wish him all the best on his future endeavours.

Central Coast Mariners Squad

Goalkeepers: Adam PEARCE, Ben KENNEDY

Defenders: Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, Antony GOLEC, Jake McGING, Kye ROWLES, Jack CLISBY
Midfielders: Adam BERRY, Tom HIARIEJ, Jacob MELLING, Danny De SILVA

Attackers: Andrew HOOLE, Connor PAIN, Corey GAMEIRO, Matt SIMON

Mariners release Wout Brama

Central Coast Mariners

Mariners release Wout Brama

The Central Coast Mariners wish to advise the departure of Dutch midfielder Wout Brama, effective immediately.

The 31-year-old will to return his hometown club, FC Twente in the Netherlands.

Arriving in the 2017/18 pre-season, Brama made 22 Hyundai A-League appearances in Yellow & Navy.

The Central Coast Mariners thank Brama for his efforts and wish him all the best on his future endeavours.