'Never-say-die' Western Utd primed for Mariners battle

A-League Men finals may be out of reach for Western United, but that won't stop them from trying to give Central Coast a touch-up.

Riding high after a shock come-from-behind 4-2 win over finals contenders Macarthur FC, John Aloisi's charges are ready to go full-throttle again as they try to turn their new home into a fortress against the league-leading Mariners on Saturday.

United opened their Wyndham Regional Football Facility home in Tarneit with a bang, overcoming a 2-0 halftime deficit to snatch their first win in three games.

Aloisi lauded his side's never-say-die attitude, despite sitting 11th (six wins, four draws, 13 losses) in the league.

"It could have easily (been a loss) because of the position we're in on the table, and the results haven't gone our way this season," Aloisi said on Friday.

"It was a little bit unfortunate to be two-nil down because we had our chance, as a goal was disallowed. That was pretty harsh ... but to see that they didn't stop playing the football we want to play and showing that they will take the game to the opposition, it shows that the belief is there.

"The way we want to play our football is there, that never-say-die attitude to really show that we won't give up no matter what - we'll keep going and try to not only finish the season off well but build for next season."

Central Coast will be looking to consolidate their hold on the premiership spot, after beating then-league leaders Wellington 2-1 on the weekend.

Mark Jackson's charges now sit on top, equal on 46 points with the Phoenix.

But Aloisi is adamant grabbing a win over the top team won't be motivated by crashing the premiership party.

"I don't think we're looking at being spoilers,'' he said.

"We're looking at beating a team that's challenging and near the top to show that we're capable of doing it and that we're capable of building this place into something that will be hard for any team to come to.

"We really showed Macarthur, but we want to now show the Mariners that it won't be easy.

"Whatever form you're in, whatever position on the table you're in, it won't be easy to come here."

Talisman Daniel Penha (groin soreness) and attacker Nikita Rukavytsya (quad) are ruled out, while defender James Donachie will return to the side after being forced to withdraw late in the game against Macarthur. 

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