John van ‘t Schip concedes Central Coast are Melbourne City FC's bogey side after the Mariners dealt a blow to their top six hopes on Sunday.
City was left to rue some wasteful finishing in the first half in particular as a Fabio Ferreira free-kick 16 minutes from time gave the Mariners a vital 1-0 win.
It’s the second time this season City has been beaten by the struggling Mariners in Gosford and extends their winless run against them to three seasons.
“It’s a fact that we have problems when we come here and we don’t get the results that we want,” a disappointed van ‘t Schip said.
“Looking at the first half I think we could have got more. We had a few chances…David Williams with a one-on-one and Josh Kennedy had a header.
“In that moment we were the better team and dictating but the second half Central Coast was clearly better, forcing us back and we couldn’t control the game as we wanted to.
“It’s not good enough.”
The Mariners endured a tumultuous build-up to the match, with Phil Moss dumped as coach on Friday, with Tony Walmsley taking the reins until the end of the season.
Asked if the coaching change helped the home side, Van ‘t Schip said: “It’s always something that gives the team something different.
“The boys have another energy and knowing they couldn’t finish the job with the old coach.
“A lot of the times there’s a good affect in the beginning…clearly today there was a good energy in the team and especially the second half they did well.”
City started the day in the top six but left the door open for Brisbane Roar to leapfrog them – depending on how they go against Western Sydney Wanderers FC later on Sunday.
The Mariners, who have won just four games all season, also have slim top six hopes and are now just five points behind City.
With seven games to go before the end of the season, there is sure to be plenty of twists and turns to snatch that last spot in the play-offs.
“We knew we had to win, we want to consolidate sixth spot and make sure we come into the playoffs,” Van ‘t Schip said.
“We all know what our task is and the first step we made today was not a good one.”