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Mariners aim to break 938-day drought

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 11/11/2016 Matt Encarnacion

It's been almost 1000 days since Central Coast last won successive games in the A-League.

Not since Bernie Ibini delivered the goods in an elimination final against Adelaide in April 2014 have the Mariners tasted A-League success in back-to-back matches.

But after toppling the Reds, the defending premiers, on their own turf last week, new coach Paul Okon can forge a big step in their rebuild by shattering a 30-month drought.

In their path stand a Wellington side again left depleted by the absence of five players away on international duty for New Zealand, including stars Kosta Barbarouses and Andrew Durante.

Okon on Friday stressed the impact of building confidence with successive wins, but wasn't getting carried away with attempting to predict how many points they can pocket in a row.

"We want to build momentum," he said ahead of their "home" clash in Canberra.

"It's a big thing in the A-league with it being a 10-team competition. If you can get on an undefeated run for a number of games, you see yourself moving up the ladder.

"I don't think we're at a stage now where we can already start making calculations from our next few games, but certainly tomorrow's game is a game we desperately want to win."

Last-start winners Phoenix have a similar hoodoo to break, having not recorded two successive victories of their own since rounds 2-3 of last season.

And just like the Mariners did last week, they too collected their first three-point game of the year with a 2-0 wipeout of Newcastle at home.

STATS THAT MATTER

* Central Coast are undefeated in their last three games against Wellington, winning each of their past two games by a score of 3-1.

* Wellington have conceded 11 goals in their past three games away from home, scoring only one goal in return.

* Mickael Tavares enjoys a passing accuracy of 91.5 per cent, the highest of any player in the A-League who has made at least 20 passes this season.

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