Jacques Faty (Sydney FC), Mickael Tavares (Sydney FC), Ivan Necevski (Sydney FC), Connor Pain (Melbourne Victory), Blake Powell (Wellington Phoenix), Kwabena Appiah (Wellington Phoenix), Jake Adelson (promoted), Adam Berry (promoted)
Joshua Rose, Mitch Austin, Luis Garcia, Anthony Kalik, Francesco Stella, Daniel Heffernan, Tomislav Uskok
The Mariners pre-season started in horror fashion, as they were booted out of the FFA Cup by Green Gully, with Powell scoring their only goal in the 2-1 loss. Post the coaching change, the Mariners had two friendlies in one day against a Capital Football Select North Squad, using two completely different lineups in each. O’Donovan and Appiah scored in the first 2-2 draw, and Bingham scored all four goals in the 4-0 win in the second match. Elsewhere, the Mariners lost to the Phoenix, with Pain scoring in the 2-1 loss.
The Mariners are coming off a very difficult 15/16 season, after finishing last in the league, and being knocked out of the FFA Cup by a NPL Victoria side. Tony Walmsley has been replaced with Paul Okon who promises to play a footballing style akin to Ange Postecoglou’s with the Socceroos. Their main worry will be in defence, having conceded 70 goals with 0 clean sheets last season. New signings hopefully will add stability to that defence, and Mariners fans can get excited if Okon delivers with his promise for attacking football.
Glory (away), Sydney FC (away), Roar (home), Wanderers (away)
Predicted Round 1 Side
Roux, Faty, Poscoliero, Ascroft
Tavares, Montgomery, Rose
Ferreira, O’Donovan, Pain
Predict some strong competition in goals between new signing Necevski and Izzo. Suspect L Rose and Pain to be contested by Appiah and Powell depending on the formation Okon ends up going with.
It has generally been hard to suggest many top fantasy picks from the Mariners in recent times, but at top dollar, Fabio Ferreira (FWD, $260k) is perhaps their main fantasy star. Providing he stays fit and gets enough support from his team-mates, the speedy winger will find the net this season. Not only is he likely to be their main spot-kick and free-kick taker, but he has a keen eye for goal which makes any defender worried.
The rest of Mariners’ fantasy picks come from cheap bench fodder or squad fillers, with Ivan Necevski (GK, $120k) and Connor Pain (MID, $140k) the top prospects there.
Mariners defenders. Despite some added experience, it is hard to see their defensive issues being easily fixed, so avoid the likes of Jacques Faty (DEF, $170k) and Michael Neill (DEF, $140k) for now until we get a better look at their defensive structure. Youngster Jake Adelson (MID, $100k) is out for the season with injury.
LEAGUE: Don’t forget to join the SuperCoachHQ.com league on aleaguefantasy.foxsports.com.au – the league code is 117-325.