Crew Update

Football is finally back!!
Welcome to the first Crew Update for season 14, the long wait is almost over, although at least we had the World Cup and more recently pre-season games, to help get us through some of those long A-League-less months. Hopefully you are looking forward to the upcoming campaign as much as all of us on the OSC Committee are!
Another exciting new look Mariners
To say that there have been significant changes since the end of last season would be the mother of all understatements, as we see no less than 15 new players coming in on top of a virtually completely new coaching department. As if the appointment of Mike Mulvey wasn’t reason enough to believe that we can close the book on the last few seasons, the inclusion of Nick Montgomery within the coaching ranks, should mean that the bar will be set to the appropriate level. We also see the return of two of our own in Club Captain Matt Simon and the effervescent Michael McGlinchey, along with a host of other new faces, including ex-EPL defender Kalifa Cissé and ex-Wanderers Jack Clisby and Jonathan Aspropotamitis, plus on-loan Aiden O’Neil, and Aussie prospects Corey Gamiero and Mario Shabow. We also welcome exciting ex-NPL signings Joe Gauci, Matthew Millar, Josh MacDonald and Jordan Murray, plus the promotion of Peter Kekeris from our NYL team. The icing on the cake though would have to be the recent additions of Tommy Oar and Ross McCormack, who is on loan from Aston Villa for the season. All of our new signings will no doubt be out to prove that they deserve a starting spot, meaning that competition for places should be much more intense this time around and our new-found depth should also mean that we have better options on our bench. It has also been great to see that Antony Golec has been able to heavily participate in pre-season, despite still recovering from his horrific injury towards the end of last season.
On top of everything, the club has become global front page news by signing none other than Usain Bolt on an indefinite trial as part of his quest to become a professional footballer. Whilst many may have initially seen this as little more than a publicity stunt, the story that has since unfolded has shown that both the World’s fastest man and the club are serious about this undertaking. Whilst those who were initially sceptical of the initiative probably felt somewhat vindicated by Bolt’s initial appearance in the trial game against Central Coast Select, his subsequent game against Macarthur Southwest United in Campbelltown last Friday, which included him scoring two goals, perhaps showed the serious intent behind the project.
Whether Bolt will prove good enough to earn a contract remains to be seen but one thing seems clear in that his presence on the Coast has not detracted from the club’s desire to rebuild both the team and its culture, meaning that there is much to be quietly excited about. Whilst our fortunes this season will need to be based on hard work and commitment, the OSC believes that the Club has listened to fans’ heartfelt concerns about the direction that the club had been moving in over the past 3-4 season. Hopefully Mike Mulvey and his staff will be able to turn the positive message the Club has been promoting into a tangible reality. Certainly, the signs have been positive in pre-season, with the team’s only defeat being at the hands of Sydney FC, although even that result was partly due to splitting the playing group across two games on consecutive nights.
Whilst the off-season is a long and frustrating period for us fans, the club should again be commended for the way it has maintained interest in the rebuilding of the team, with initiatives like the games against local opposition being warmly received. The only real negative of the pre-season was another unfortunate FFA cup exit at the first hurdle, although this time around there were at least genuinely mitigating circumstances.
As well as a new look team, we also have a brand-new kit to provide a visual aspect to the team’s regeneration, although we seemingly run the risk of being renamed the barcodes by rival fans and the design does make reading player’s names something of a challenge.
The club has confirmed to us that supporter buses have again been arranged for NSW away games this season and for those of you that have not yet experienced this way of attending games, we recommend that you do, as it is about so much more than just getting to and from the venue.
Round 1 sees us travel to Brisbane on Sunday to play our perpetual bogey side in the Roar. Mike Mulvey has been very vocal in the press in saying that our recent poor history of results against the men in orange means nothing, as this is a new team and a new era. Hopefully the boys can back up his words by producing a convincing display up at Suncorp Stadium to bring home the 3 points. We will have to wait until 27 October to see our new-look team run out at our beloved Central Coast Stadium and must all be hoping that this team can once again make it the fortress that other teams feared to visit in the past.
The OSC’s Plans
So what has the OSC been up to in the off-season? Well our Annual General Meeting took place at Gosford RSL on 13 August, where our committee elections took place. This event included an enjoyable Q&A session with Matt Simon, Nick Montgomery and Shaun Mielekamp, which included some interesting discussion points given the changes that were taking place at the club.
The OSC is also working with the club in order to to ensure that our programme for the coming season delivers some excellent Member events.
Our efforts to collaborate with our local community to build a replica miniature galleon to become part of game day activities continue and we are hopeful we will be able to announce that work on this has commenced soon. Our intention remains to create something that will become a match day icon, that fans are able to interact with as part of match day activities in Dane Drive.
Sadly, the Mariners Family Day that was due to be held on 14 October, was cancelled due to the ongoing wet weather, which was a great shame, as the event looked like being one of the best yet.
Whilst planning is still ongoing, we hope to be able to announce that we will be conducting events such as our popular Stadium Tour, Breakfast with the Mariners and Pirate Day, plus the Tour of Duty, which looks like being a little different this time around.
We have made some changes to the CCMOSC Player of the Year voting this season, in order to make the race for our coveted award closer and more exciting. When you access the form, you will now be asked to vote for your top three players instead of just one. You will need to allocate 3 points to best on field, 2 points to the next best and 1 point to the third best. We appreciate that this may seem a little more complicated than before but the intent is to ensure a fairer more representative outcome and hopefully Members will find that this will allow them to become more engaged with every game this season.
And how about at this for a sensational offer???
In addition to the above Member events, the club has once again generously provided us with the chance to win a free season 2018/19 membership (in the category of the winner’s choice no less!) for any OSC member who joins or renews by 20 December, with the winner to be announced on New Year’s Eve.
You do the maths: that’s the best odds in town. A $20 OSC membership (or $10 for kids) for the chance to win any category of club membership for next season!
Family membership options are again available this season, which will cut $10 from the cost of individual memberships and is therefore a great way for you to get your whole ‘crew’ to sign up.
Please also remember that our unique OSC polo shirts are available to purchase at every home game, so why not come and see us in Dane Drive to try one on?
Go the Mariners!!