Jack Clisby has thrown his support behind new coach Alen Stajcic, saying the former Matildas boss has brought a new philosophy to the Central Coast Mariners.
After leaving the Matildas in one of the most controversial and secretive sackings in Australian sporting history, there was much furore over where the successful women's coach would go next.
Few predicted the in-turmoil Mariners, which are staring down the brunt of the worst A-League season of all time, not to mention record-low crowds and devastating scorelines.
In many ways, it's the worst time for Central Coast to be facing their bitter F3 Derby rivals, Newcastle Jets.
Coming fresh off an 8-2 hiding at the hands of Wellington Phoenix that ended Mike Mulvey's reign, a result that will freshen memories of Mulvey's first match, an 8-2 loss against tonight's opponents, a poignant stench of revisionism surrounds this derby.
But with one of the foremost names in Australian football currently at the helm, Clisby believes there's reason to be excited.
"Things are looking very positive, he's instilled what he wants in a very short time," the fullback said.
"Obviously, it's been a rocky season for us and people are going to try to point fingers but as professionals, we have to understand that things like this happen in football.
"He's got a great resume, he's done fantastic things with the Matildas. The intensity in training has been great, he's come with a key plan of how he wants us to play."
While there are only a handful of matches remaining in the regualr season, both of these sides have more to play for than most.
For Central Coast and Stajcic, the thought of ending this season as the worst - if not in losses, then in win / loss ratio - in the competition's history is yet another unwanted and preventable record.
For Newcastle Jets, finals will seem a hair-breath away after a string of improved performances under Ernie Merrick. The Jets themselves are staring down a less-than-notable feat - from finishing last two seasons ago, to making the Grand Final last season, merely to slip out of finals this campaign.
All in all it makes for a tantalising, if hardly vintage F3 Derby. In many ways, it's what the two sets of fans have become used to. It's hard to tell what will happen, but it's likely something exciting will.
"It's a new stage, a new plan, a new philosophy," Clisby said.
"We've been talking about where to be in certain situations of the game, you know (Stajcic) is easy to approach if things aren't going well.
"I feel tomorrow is a good chance to rectify this season."