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Happier days ... Noel Spencer celebrates a goal during his time with the Mariners

Happier days ... Noel Spencer celebrates a goal during his time with the Mariners (Getty Images)

Sacked Mariners skipper thrown a lifeline

Former Central Coast Mariners skipper Noel Spencer says he is hoping to revive his career with A-League rivals Sydney FC.

He has been signed by Sydney on a six-month contract after being sacked by the Mariners when they failed to make the finals.

Spencer said he and the club's new interim coach Branko Culina would be hoping to secure longer deals with good performances in the Asian Champions League.

"Very much so, I mean six months, it's an opportunity for me to work hard and show what I can do in front of the coaching staff here," he said.

"And obviously Branko's in a similar position, I'm sure if he does well he'll get an extension as well.

"So it's all part of business and you've just got to really knuckle down and work hard and let things unfold themselves I think."

Spencer said he was surprised and disappointed to be axed by Central Coast.

"I enjoyed my time there and Central Coast was a big part of my career and we achieved so many things up there," he said.

"But at the end of the day it's business and things have to change and people move on.

"And so it's a new start for me here at Sydney FC and I'm really looking forward to the challenge."

Alex Wilkinson has replaced Spencer as Mariners skipper and extended his contract with the club through to the end of the 2009 season.

The 22-year-old is the only Mariner to have played in all 60 of the club's matches since their inception.

He has worn the captain's armband on six occasions previously, deputising for Spencer at the end of the recent campaign.

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