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Shakira's advice for Pique

The Toe Poke
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By ESPN Staff

Mariners not fazed by grand final history

The Central Coast Mariners deny there is any monkey on their back as they face the possibility of a fourth A-League grand final defeat.

The Mariners, beaten three times before in the championship decider, hope to break their duck against high-flying debut team the Western Sydney Wanderers in a sell-out grand final at Sydney's Allianz Stadium on Sunday.

"People talk about the past three grand final (losses) but we can't do anything about them," coach Graham Arnold said as the Mariners trained in front of hundreds of their supporters at Tuggerah on Thursday.

"We are fresh and motivated and, as long as we execute our game plan, we will be fine.

"We are looking forward to playing in front of a full house. It's a long time since that has happened there in any code.

"There is pressure on both teams, but I'm sure we can handle it."

Arnold acknowledged the massive fan support for Tony Popovic's Wanderers, but said he hoped neutrals would throw their voices behind his team, including Sydney FC fans.

"The Mariners are everyone's second favourite side," he said.

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