A BATTLE between two of the A-League's rising stars could take centre stage when Central Coast host Western Sydney at Bluetongue Stadium on Saturday.
Once in camp together with the Socceroos at the East Asian Cup, Trent Sainsbury and Tomi Juric will lock horns in the grand final rematch.
The duo had contrasting tournaments in South Korea, with Juric making three appearances and scoring a goal while Sainsbury was unused by Holger Osieck.
Sainsbury knows what to expect from the physical 22-year-old striker.
"He's a good striker – very physical for a young boy," Sainsbury said.
"He's very direct so I'm going to have to be on my toes when I play against him."
Fellow Mariners defender Josh Rose said he expected the Wanderers to play a similar style to last season, when they won the premiership and reached the grand final.
Rose picked out Juric as a key addition to a Western Sydney squad which has remained largely settled through the off-season.
"They've bought really well," Rose said.
"Young Tomi Juric has been in the Socceroos squad in the off-season so he looks like a good addition up front for them.
"Other than, they're just normal. They're going to be a hard-working team and battle hard until the end."
While Sainsbury is excited by what right-back Storm Roux will add to the Mariners, Rose expects Marcos Flores to impress.
The former Adelaide United and Melbourne Victory attacker looks to have settled well at the Mariners.
Meanwhile, veteran Dutch defender Marcel Seip is expected to bolster the Mariners at the other end of the park.
"Marcos has definitely fitted in well. He looks like a great addition," Rose said.
"Marcel has slotted in well.
"To be honest, all the new boys have all got their job to do, they all know what their job is and everyone looks good – right from Stormy to Marcos."