Mariners, Macarthur sweat on big name injuries as Socceroo taken ‘off as quickly as we could’

Valere Germain was the star of the show as Macarthur FC cruised to a crushing AFC Cup victory on Thursday night.

They may have cruised to victory over Filipino opposition in the AFC Cup this week but both Central Coast Mariners and Macarthur FC were dealt key injury blows ahead of the new Isuzu UTE A-League season.

Midfielders Ulises Davila and Daniel De Silva were withdrawn in the first half of Macarthur’s 8-2 demolition of Dynamic Herb Cebu FC on Thursday night, with the latter completing just 12 minutes of the game at Campbelltown Stadium.

MACARTHUR STAR: From the bench to game-changer by half-time, Bulls youngster lights up AFC Cup

“With Danny we’re not sure just yet but it looks like he’s strained his hamstring,” said Bulls head coach Mile Sterjovski of De Silva, who is back at the club for a third straight campaign having re-signed in the off-season.

As for captain Ulises Davila ,the prognosis is seemingly much better. 

“Uli was just precautionary,” said Sterjovski. “He felt something during the week and we thought it was best we give him a rest.”

That news will come as welcome relief for the club, who were without the Mexican playmaker for the final three months of 2022-23 A-League Men season due to a meniscus injury.

Meanwhile, Mariners boss Mark Jackson will be sweating over the fitness of goalkeeper and club captain Danny Vukovic.

Vukovic suffered a groin injury in the latter stages of their thumping 9-1 win over Stallion Laguna FC on Wednesday night.

AFC Wrap: Two special scorers – for very different reasons – on huge night for A-Leagues clubs in Asia

“We got him off as quickly as we could,” said Jackson, who replaced Vukovic with Young Socceroo Jack Warshawsky.

“He’s an experienced player so he knew that he probably needed to get off the pitch and we did that successfully.  We’ll assess him over the coming days so fingers crossed that won’t be too bad.”

Vukovic was an ever-present for the Mariners last season, starting every single game for the club as they secured their first Isuzu UTE A-League Championship in 10 years. 

The reigning Isuzu UTE A-League champions kick off their title defence away at Adelaide United on Friday 20th October, while Macarthur play host to Brisbane Roar the following day.