Burnley born footballer strikes to clinch A-League Grand Final win

TOP SCORER: Burnley-born Daniel McBreen
TOP SCORER: Burnley-born Daniel McBreen

Daniel McBreen - top-scorer in the Australian A-League - was on target again on Sunday as Central Coast Mariners won the Grand Final against Western Sydney Warriors.

McBreen, born in Burnley, was also named man-of-the-match after the 2-0 victory at the Allianz Stadium.

In front of a crowd of 42,102, Dutch defender Patrick Zwaanswijk opened the scoring a minute before half-time, before McBreen sealed victory with a penalty in the 68th minute,

And the 36-year-old hopes - after outscoring the likes of Alessandro Del Piero and former Claret Besart Berisha - that his 20 goals will earn him a new contract at the club, after winning their first A-League championship, in their fourth final in eight years.

McBreen netted from the spot in the 2-0 success, to double the target Mariners coach Graham Arnold had set him for a new deal at the start of the season.

Despite his 20 goals, he had recently missed twice from the spot - in a run of five the Mariners squandered recently - and speaking to news.com.au, he said: “After all the the misses and all the press we’ve been getting about it, we got the one that counted.”

McBreen, who added he knew his late father Jim “would be smiling down on him’’, said he would love to play on with the Mariners: “I’m not sure yet what’s happening next season.

“I love it here. I love the place, I love the people, I love the team, the coaching staff, living near the beach - everything.

“Hopefully we can work something out.

“It’s up to them. They have to come to me now.’’

McBreen was born in Burnley, but moved to Australia just over a month later after father Jimmy - who played for Burnley United was scouted by Newcastle KB United in the Australian top flight.

Raised in Newcastle, Daniel played for Edgeworth Eagles before earning a full-time contract with Newcastle United in the National Soccer League in 2000.

He also played for FC Universitatea Craiova in Romania, but left to join Falkirk in 2004.

Brian Laws took him to Scunthorpe United in August 2006, and after being released by Nigel Adkins a year later, he joined York City on loan, before going back up north with St Johnstone.

He returned to York City, before moving back Down Under to play for North Queensland Fury, Perth Glory and then Central Coast.