Sky Blues see-saw

Sydney FC's gripping derby win over the Wanderers was undoubtedly one of the high points of the Sky Blues' season so far.

Sydney FC's gripping derby win over the Wanderers was undoubtedly one of the high points of the Sky Blues' season so far.

It has given the club's fans some long-awaited bragging rights in the Harbour City and restored the belief they are headed for a return to finals football this season.

But if their form from the start of 2014 is anything to go by, the Sky Blues could been heading for a fall this weekend.

Frank Farina's side have had a tendency this year to follow up a strong effort with a rather disappointing one. A lot of the time it's been a positive step followed by a giant leap backwards.

The stats tell some of the story. From the turn of the year, Sydney have played 10 matches, winning four, losing five and drawing the other one against Adelaide.

While it hasn't quite been from brilliant to basket-case and back, you get the picture.

A perfect example of their inconsistency came in the space of five days back in January.

The Sky Blues crushed the Melbourne Victory 5-0 on their home soil on Australia Day before then backing it up with a loss to the (then) last-placed 10-man Heart the following week.

So does that mean Sydney are set for more heartache against the Roar on Friday night?

The easy answer would be yes considering their head-to-head record against the men from Brisbane as well as previous matches this season.

The Sky Blues have been on the end of two heavy defeats to the Roar already this campaign, a 4-0 drubbing away in round 2, followed by a 5-2 thrashing at Allianz Stadium on Boxing Day.

"They've certainly had the wood on us this year," Farina said of the Roar this week.

"There's no hiding from the fact they've scored nine goals against us and beaten us twice...and deservedly so.

"They are a good side when they are on song. But we've improved gradually.

"With the pressure and importance of the games coming up for us, there's no pressure on them as they are sitting comfortably at the top.

"That (pressure) tends to bring the best out of us. We don't have many runs on the board with them this year but we're looking to get out there and get the win."

Luckily for the Sky Blues there are reasons why things could be different this time around.

The return of Terry Antonis in the last month and the addition of hard-as-nails defender Sasa Ognenovski has improved their overall performances.

No major new injury concerns means Farina has also had a fairly settled line-up recently unlike earlier in the campaign. And there's nothing like a derby win to lift morale and confidence amongst the playing group.

"It helps but I don't think it prepares you for when you cross the white line and go on the park," Farina said of the 3-1 win over the Wanderers.

"It puts a spring in the step of the players. But the big games keep coming. The players realise the importance of these last five games coming into finals.

"They know what's at stake and hopefully again they will be 'up'. I've got no issues they will be anything but ready."

They will need to be on Friday night or it could be another case of one step forward followed by two steps back.