Top team heads to Perth

Perth goalkeeper Danny Vukovic says Central Coast's heavy travel schedule and loss of influential midfielder Rostyn Griffiths means Sunday's clash is perfectly timed for the Glory.

Perth goalkeeper Danny Vukovic says Central Coast's heavy travel schedule and loss of influential midfielder Rostyn Griffiths means Sunday's clash is perfectly timed for the Glory.

Perth face the Mariners in a crucial match at nib Stadium, with the home side needing to win to consolidate their spot at the top four and to remain a realistic chance of sneaking into second spot.

But there's also plenty on the line for Hyundai A-League leaders Central Coast, whose three-game winless streak has seen their lead over second-placed to just three points with as many games to play.

Despite that, Vukovic said his old side's Asian Champions League participation - which sees them play Tianjin Teda FC in China on Wednesday before travelling to Perth - could make them vulnerable.

"They've got a lot of travel in front of them and hopefully they're a little bit tired when they play us," he said.

"I've played Asian Champions League before and that was probably one of the toughest things, the travel."

"An 11-hour flight from Sydney to China and then a long flight from China to Perth does take it out of you."

"We're hoping they're really struggling on Sunday and we're going to use that to our advantage."

"In the last month they haven't been playing their best so it's probably a good time for us to be facing them."

Vukovic also said the loss of Griffiths in late February to Chinese Super League team Guangzhou R&F had brought the Mariners back to the pack.

"He's been one of their best players. He broke down a lot of opposition attacks and he's able to spray the ball both sides of the field and start attacks for them," he said.

"He's going to be a massive loss for them and hopefully one that's hard for them to cover."

The Glory go into their third last game of the season in fourth spot on 37 points, just behind Wellington (39) and narrowly ahead of both Melbourne Heart and Newcastle (both 34).

A win on Sunday will all but ensure Perth makes the finals for just the second time in the A-League, but Vukovic said it would also send a statement that they're capable of much more.

"I think it [would show] that we're real contenders for the title. If we can get a result against the Mariners people will stand up and take notice," he said

"We're confident we can win the next three games and if we do that we're putting pressure on the teams above us."