Comeback kings Mariners make history as Kuol scores double


Central Coast are setting themselves up as the A-League's comeback kings after chalking up a second successive 3-2 win-from-behind with a 3-2 victory over Western United in Gosford.

Two goals in four minutes from cult hero Alou Kuol gave the Mariners a stunning triumph after trailing at half time, just four days after they did the exact same thing to Melbourne City.

On this occasion, Alen Stajcic's men were down 2-1 with 13 minutes left on the clock when teenager Kuol landed his fourth and fifth goals of the season to make it 3-2 - the same final score as the Mariners' turnaround win against City on Wednesday.

Earlier in the week United coach Mark Rudan labelled Stajcic a magician for the way he has turned around the fortunes of the Mariners this season.

And on Sunday night the former Matildas coach did that reputation no harm at all, adding an injection of energy from the bench for his side to come home strong in their third game in eight days.

The win put last season's wooden-spooners back on top of the A-League ladder with five wins from seven as they face the next month on the road.

Western United started strong, and went ahead through Tomislav Uskok just four minutes in before the Mariners levelled through Matt Simon 12 minutes later.

The atmosphere was intense throughout, not least when a battle between Besart Berisha and Mariners defender Ruon Tongyik broke out in the first half.

It was Berisha who had the last laugh on that occasion, getting the better of Tongyik in the 42nd minute, turning him inside out to find enough space and time to strike and give United a 2-1 lead.

But the comeback specialists got into their stride when Stajcic threw on Kuol on 61 minutes.

The 19-year-old equalised from a Daniel De Silva corner on 77 minutes, before diving to head in a cross from fellow replacement Daniel Bouman four minutes later to send the Mariners' fans into raptures.

The Mariners will face Wellington next Sunday in Wollongong, while United will play Sydney FC on Saturday at AAMI Park.

Source AAP