How does the current Sydney FC juggernaut compare to last season?

Sydney FC are seeking a second straight double after becoming the first club to win back-to-back Hyundai A-League premierships.

But while they have again been the competition's clear standout, minor cracks in the champions' crown have occasionally appeared.

So how does this team compare to last season's all-conquering incarnation?

We checked in with Opta data to check the figures.

Opta Widget: Opta

UNSTOPPABLE IN ATTACK

Newcastle Jets might be considered the entertainers of the Hyundai A-League, but at their best there are none more potent than Sydney FC.

Arnold's men have netted 60 goals in their 25 matches this season (an average of 2.4 per game), already up on the 55 they scored during the 2016/17 regular season.

The significant improvement has been spearheaded by a dominant Bobo, who has increased his output from 15 goals to 24.

READ: Bobo sets Hyundai A-League goals record

He hasn't been alone, either: 11 players have hit the scoresheet for Sydney FC this season compared to only nine last term.

Greater economy in attack has been evidenced by a sharp rise in shot conversion rate from 14.6 per cent to 18 per cent. 

Bobo
Bobo has been at the forefront of a more prolific unit.

BETTER ON THE BALL

Where the Sky Blues were content to see less than half of the ball in 2016/17, the next phase of the team's development has elevated the figure to what is now 53.8 per cent of possession.

An additional 1090 passes have been the result, courtesy of cleaner passing accuracy (79.3 per cent; up from 75.7 per cent).

READ: Arnold hails Sydney FC's history-making achievement

Sydney FC's clearer focus on possession has contributed to a marked drop in a key defensive stat.

Tireless work off the ball was the trademark of last season's success, but a vast decrease in interceptions from 551 to 275 illustrates the shift in mindset.

Josh Brillante
Only team-mate Jordy Buijs has made more passes than Josh Brillante.

LESS EFFECTIVE?

Though they are rightly the raging favourites to again do the double, there is a suggestion that other teams might just be coming to grips with the champions.

Three losses in their 25 outings to date mean they won't reach last year's points tally even with another two victories.

A more forgiving defence - conceding 22 goals to 12 - has undoubtedly been the difference.

That will surely be the focus come the Finals Series as Arnold looks to rectify the extra mileage his side are affording opposition teams, who have this season managed an additional 23 shots.

Jordy Buijs Sydney FC
Sydney FC are not infallible at the back.