CENTRAL Coast Mariners got their Asian campaign back on track tonight with a thumping 5-1 win over Tianjin Teda at Bluetongue Stadium.
Veteran striker Daniel McBreen celebrated his contract extension by capitalising on some great lead-up play from defender Pedj Bojic, who set up both McBreen goals in the impressive win at Bluetongue Stadium.
The Mariners led 2-0 at half-time following McBreen's double before Joshua Rose, Michael McGlinchey and Mustafa Amini added their names to the scoresheet.
It was a performance to remember for the Mariners, who went into the match last in Group G and needing a win to have any hope of qualifying for the next phase of the competition.
They played accordingly. After surviving a chance in the opening minute, the Mariners dominated much of the match.
A 40m run by Bojic and pinpoint cross set up McBreen for his opening goal in the 10th minute and the same pair were at it again 10 minutes later to put the Mariners two goals up.
The visitors were dangerous on the break, but the Mariners could easily have gone into the break even further ahead.
Despite not playing for two weeks, the Mariners looked sharp with McBreen, Bojic, McGlinchey and John Hutchinson especially influential in the first period.
Central Coast kicked off the second half in the best possible way when Rose struck home with his right foot after McBreen and Adam Kwasnik were heavily involved in the build-up.
Two minutes later, Kwasnik shot just wide from close range.
It was not all the Mariners with some defensive lapses from the home team keeping Tianjin interested.
The Mariners scored a deserved fourth goal in the 71st minute when a spectacular curling effort from McGlinchey hit the back of the net.
Within a minute the Chinese outfit showed how dangerous they were on the counter-attack when Liao Bochao replied just a minute after McGlinchey's strike.
The Mariners nearly made it five goals in the 80th minute but Rose had his header saved before McBreen's follow-up was blocked.
Rose was in the thick of the action three minutes later when he failed to connect with a low McBreen cross with the goal wide open.
Playing his final home game before joining Borussia Dortmund, Amini showed all his class with a brilliant strike from outside the box in the 85th minute.
Seongam Ilwha drew 1-1 with Nagoya Grampus which would put them both in top spot, with the Mariners in third place, one point behind.
The Mariners final match of the group is against Grampus in Japan, meaning victory there will see the Mariners qualify.
However tonight's match may have been coach Graham Arnold's final game at Gosford. Central Coast are tomorrow expected to make their final offer to tempt him to stay and reject a lucrative offer from Sydney.
Central Coast 5 (Daniel McBreen 10, 20, Joshua Rose 49, Michael McGlinchey 71, Mustafa Amini 85)
Tianjin Teda 1 (Liao Bochao 72)