Rose: Moss is still learning

Central Coast defender Josh Rose says coach Phil Moss is “learning in the job” but has backed him as the man to take the Mariners forward.

Long-time Mariners assistant Moss took over from Graham Arnold in November 2013, but endured a miserable start to the 2014-15 season.

After winning their opening game of the A-League season, Central Coast went on a 13-game winless run in all competitions.

Mariners owner Mike Charlesworth publicly offered his support to Moss in November amid poor results and talk of dressing room disharmony.

The proud Gosford club have steadied the ship with two wins, two draws and a loss in their past five matches, but remain out of the top six ahead of a crucial clash with their former foes Brisbane Roar this Friday.

Despite Central Coast’s recent form improvement, pressure re-emerged on Moss after a diabolical 5-1 home loss to Sydney FC on January 24.

“He’s learning just like everyone else,” Rose told FourFourTwo about the 43-year-old coach.

“He’s new to the job and he learns as he goes along. That’s probably the hardest thing.

“I see day by day he’s getting better. He’s just got to stick to his style.

“Hopefully if he sticks to that and keeps drilling into the boys what he wants, eventually we’ll play the style that he wants and we’ll get the results with it.”

Moss has been resolute in his desire to get the Mariners playing an attractive brand of football, despite results slipping.

Rose revealed the Coast mentor’s message wasn’t entirely glowing after last weekend’s fighting 2-1 win over Adelaide United where the left-back netted the late winner.

“He was happy, as one of the big things he wanted was to get the pride and spirit back in the shirt,” Rose said.

“But he made it clear he wasn’t happy with the standard of play.

“We’re also disappointed as well with how we won the game. We don’t want to win games like that, week-in week-out.

“It’s alright to do that every now and then, but we want to win pretty and play good football.”

The Mariners could face a challenging period in the coming months with an AFC Champions League qualifier against Chinese club Guangzhou R&F next week to decide they make the group stage.

ACL qualification will stretch the Mariners’ squad depth, given they’ve blooded half a dozen youngsters this term and just lost league top scorer Mitchell Duke to Japanese club Shimizu S-Pulse.

Rose nominated new signing Fabio Ferreira as a like-for-like replacement for Duke, while he hoped the club’s youngsters could continue to progress and fill the void.