Bennett behind Mariners' win: Arnold

April 21, 2013
By James MacSmith

Don't die with the music in you.

Spurred on by those words - borrowed from rugby league supercoach Wayne Bennett - the Central Coast Mariners finally broke through for their maiden A-League grand final triumph on Sunday.

Deliriously happy Mariners coach Graham Arnold revealed in the immediate aftermath of their 2-0 grand final victory over Western Sydney Wanderers at Allianz Stadium that he had drawn upon Bennett for inspiration and mentoring in the month leading up the club's finest hour.

"He basically said to me 'I will tell you how to win a grand final,'" Arnold said.

"'I have done it seven times, I will show you how to do it.'

"I drove up to Newcastle to see him and talk to him. He gave me a lot of great advice. I can't thank him enough.

"I had a wonderful tutor in Guus Hiddink and then Pim Verbeek but they are overseas. I'm always trying to learn from the best and the best in Australia is Wayne Bennett.

"OK the sport is different but Wayne was a fantastic mentor for me the last four weeks. He has so much experience."

The grand final victory was the Mariners' first after tasting defeat on three previous occasions.

Mariners captain John Hutchinson said the phrase 'Don't Die With The Music In You', which is also the title of one of Bennett's books, was a rallying call for the Mariners in their successful A-League campaign.

"Arnie loves that quote, he is always putting it up on the board," Hutchinson said.

"He writes it on the board as we are leaving for the game ... that you don't want to leave anything out there. You go out there and you give it your best and that is what we did today."

Arnold obviously played a huge role in the Mariners' win and it was left to Hutchinson to spell that out.

"Arnie is just so inspirational to us all," he said.