Melbourne City's classy young defender Ruon Tongyik admitted his side's red card made it hard for them as Sydney FC powered on to defeat a 10-man City 3-1 on Friday night.
Following Manny Muscat's red card late in the first half, City were up against it after they scored a wonder goal through Nick Fitzgerald.
But after the scores were 1-1 at the break, City weren’t able to hold the visitors who outclassed the home side at AAMI Park with a Bobo double and a sublime free kick from Brandon O'Neill to power home in the second half.
“It was pretty tough, especially being a man down, and nothing really went our way second half,” Tongyik, a second half substitute for Tim Cahill, told SBS TV.
“Very disappointing the way we displayed ourselves. I guess we have to pick ourselves up for next week.”
City’s spot in the top four is now under real threat - if Roar and Glory win this weekend Michael Valkanis’ men will slide down to fifth on the ladder.
City next travel to Central Coast in Round 22 as they aim to keep their top four hopes alive.
Tongyik was left out of the starting XI by coach Michael Valkanis, who played Muscat in the centre of defence.
It was a move that backfired with the red card, with Tongyik coming on at half time in a tactical move to replace Tim Cahill.
Tongyik was philosophical about his benching.
“It’s football, one week you play one week you don’t. I’ll just keep my head up and keep training hard.”