Daniel De Silva has hailed the influence of coach Alen Stajcic as Central Coast Mariners close in on their first FFA Cup Final.
After a few lean years in the Hyundai A-League, the Mariners are on the cusp of reaching the FFA Cup decider when they host defending champions Adelaide United in the Semi Final on Wednesday night.
De Silva is likely to play a key role for the Gosford club and has started all three previous matches of the Mariners’ Cup run.
Having spent last season on loan at Hyundai A-League champions Sydney FC, the 22-year-old return to his parent club and has thrived working under Stajcic.
“He [Staj] has come in with a lot of new faces and a new philosophy and everything, it’s been awesome and obviously the results are telling,” De Silva told the Mariners’ official website.
“I’m looking forward to continuing to work hard during pre-season and hit the season running. I think you’ll see an attacking style of play from us this season.
“Staj loves to play combinations, and that’s something I think we’ve shown so far.”
“We’ll continue to work on that and get better at that, but hopefully it’s an entertaining style of football and a style that will help us to win games.”
Asked about the challenge of facing the Reds, who are aiming to qualify for a fourth FFA Cup final, De Silva said: “They’ve made some good signings and lost a good player in [Craig] Goodwin but I think for us we’ll just focus on ourselves and preparing for the game as best as we can.
“We have a style of play, we’re adaptable and we’ll have a look at them in the coming days and prepare for the game as best as we can tactically.
“It’s a good squad this year with plenty of depth and I think it’ll be a great match and we’re looking forward to it.
“We’re very excited to be staying at home and playing in front of the fans.
“Hopefully we get a really great turnout, it will be great to see all the fans there, and we really can’t wait to play our first game of the season at home and we’re all hoping to get the job done in front of them.”