Goals to Brazilian duo Cassio and Alemao were enough for the Reds to take maximum points on a hard and fast pitch that wasn't conducive to controlled football.
With Sydney dominating much of the possession throughout the match, it was the home team who sat back and waited for mistakes and the first one came when skipper Travis Dodd made a determined run down the right side on the stroke of half-time.
Before losing the ball on the byline, Dodd regained after a Robbie Middleby slip-up and knocked the ball into the path of Kristian Sarkies who cut it back for Cassio who managed to slot it home from close-range.
Late in the piece, onlookers saw a changing of the guard at Sydney when veteran Steve Corica and midfield star Shannon Cole were substituted for debutant Kofi Danning and second gamer Rhyan Grant; coach John Kosmina attempting to inject some youthful enthusiasm into the proceedings.
However, it was to no avail as Sarkies again became provider by playing a long ball to Alemao who needed just one touch to shoot past Sky Blues goalkeeper Ivan Necevski in the 83rd minute to wrap up the match.
The win sees Adelaide regain top spot and sets up a mouth-watering clash with Melbourne Victory at the Telstra Dome on Tuesday night whilst Sydney FC are in turmoil with four losses on the trot and six points out of the finals race with just three games in hand.