A closer look at the Central Coast Mariners as Usain…

The Central Coast Mariners are little known outside of Australia, but have been put on the map after taking world record-holding sprinter Usain Bolt on a trial.

Here are five things you may not know about the A-League side based north of Sydney.

Trophies

The A-League has had six different champions in the 13 years it has been running, with the Mariners taking home the title in the 2012/13 season thanks to a 2-0 Grand Final victory over the Western Sydney Wanderers.

In Australia, the top six clubs from the regular season go into a post-season play-off to determine the champions, with the Mariners named losing finalists three times.

In addition, Central Coast have topped the A-League twice – in 2007/08 and 2011/12 after recording the best regular season record and they reached the semi-finals of the Football Federation Australia (FFA) Cup in 2014.

Form

The Mariners have had little to celebrate in recent years as they have finished bottom of the table twice in the last three seasons.

Last term saw the club lose six matches in a row and suffer an 8-2 defeat at home to rivals the Newcastle Jets during the last game of the campaign.

Central Coast were the first A-League team to be dumped out of the FFA Cup in the first round by state level opposition in two consecutive seasons.

Players

Many of the current Mariners line-up are unknown outside of Australia, but the club have formerly seen goalkeeper Mark Bosnich, ex-Portsmouth and Coventry striker John Aloisi and current Socceroos captain Mile Jedinak on their books.

Other former Mariners who have played in England include John Sutton, who had spells at Wycombe and Motherwell, former Swindon, Cardiff and Plymouth midfielder Wayne O’Sullivan and former Nottingham Forest and Northampton defender Chris Doig.

Former Barcelona and Liverpool winger Luis Garcia also played 10 games, scoring twice.

Management

The current head coach of the Mariners is Manchester-born Mike Mulvey, who began his playing career as a trainee for Manchester United before emigrating to Australia.

The club also announced that former United assistant manager Mike Phelan was joining the staff as a sporting director last month.

Kit

The club colours are blue and yellow – and their current strip manufactured by Umbro has the two hues in vertical stripes.

Three seasons ago, Central Coast fans were slightly put out by the kit design which featured a palm tree emblazoned on the front – a nod to the trees which separate the southern end of the ground from Brisbane Water.

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