IN his first game in charge since the departure of Graham Arnold, Central Coast Mariners new coach Phil Moss has steered the reigning champs to a dramatic 2-1 win over Perth Glory at nib Stadium tonight.
Goals to Perth's Jamie MacLaren and Mariners' Michael McGlinchey, with an injury-time winner from Mitchell Duke saw the visitors claim all three points.
Glory were one man down for the last 15 minutes of the match when Scott Jamieson was stretchered off just two minutes after coach Alistair Edwards cleared his bench.
It was the third straight A-League match of the night where a team was forced to finish with 10 men.
The game started at a slow burn until marque William Gallas nearly wrote tomorrow's headlines with a perennial crowd-pleaser - his bicycle kick just inching over the crossbar.
Mariner's Matt Simon had a sniff of goal on 22' but a couple of minutes later it was Glory who took the lead.
Young gun MacLaren, running onto a delightful ball over the top by left-back Jamieson, chipped Mariners' goalkeeper Liam Reddy to put the home side one up.
In a blow for Glory, Gallas was subbed with a calf injury on 32' and just two minutes after the veteran defender hobbled off the visitors struck back. A neat back-heel from Simon found Kiwi International McGlinchey who drove the ball low and hard to bring up the equaliser.
McGlinchey came close again on 44', his free kick smacking off the post and back into play but no one in yellow and navy was able to take advantage.
After the break MacLaren had his chance of notching up a brace when he pounced on a loose ball from Reddy but the goalkeeper was quick to snuff out the shot.
Reddy was called into action moments later as Cameron Edwards cutting in on his left, fired off a long-range swerving effort that had the shot-stopper at full stretch.
There was plenty of niggle in the match and controversy too as Glory's Sidnei was shown a yellow for simulation after going down in the box under contact from defender Storm Roux.
Glory were down to 10 from 73 minutes but continued to press and looked the most likely until the sucker punch on 93' when Duke slotted home the winner off a Josh Rose delivery into the box.
Apart from the loss the match could prove costly for Glory losing two influential players to injury.
The result sees the Perth outfit in seventh on the A-League ladder while the Mariners jump to fifth with a game in hand.
More to follow...