Sydney FC coach Vitezslav Lavicka is rallying his players to find their hunger and aggression after the Sky Blues fell to their second-straight defeat on Saturday night against the North Queensland Fury.
A Robbie Fowler special proved the difference between the teams, and steered the Fury to their first ever Hyundai A-League win in the round-6 clash in front of a season-high crowd at the Sydney Football Stadium.
The 1-nil defeat came seven days after New Zealand international, Shane Smeltz netted a brace to kick Gold Coast United to a 2-1 win over the Sky Blues at Skilled Park, and Sydney's Czech mentor wants his players to re-discover the form that saw them clinch 10 competition points from their first four matches.
"We need to improve everything," said Lavicka after Saturday's loss to North Queensland. "We played a bad game in attack without creativity, without (the hunger) to win.
"I have to say that the opponent played very well but if I could compare our performance from round one away against them (where Sydney won 3-2 in Townsville), we had a bad performance."
Lavicka observed that his team lacked the attacking flair that saw it score six goals in its first four matches, with Sydney's strong attack unable to crack the North Queensland back-line, which was well marshalled by a solid Karl Dodd.
"(The) Opponent played very well, very compact especially in defence," he said.
Meanwhile, Steve Corica - who was recalled in the starting eleven on the weekend after coming off the bench in the Gold Coast match - admitted that the Sky Blues were below their best.
"When you come back into the team, you want to win the game and help the team," he assessed.
"Obviously all our performances were down tonight."
The skipper has already turned his attention to Sydney's next match this Sunday against the Newcastle Jets at the SFS, and he believes his team can bounce back, saying confidently, "we'll do better next time."
Sydney's revival will have to be achieved without starlets Kofi Danning, Rhyan Grant and Matt Jurman, however. The trio are among five young Sydney FC representatives that will depart Australia today with the Qantas Young Socceroos to contest the FIFA U20 World Cup, which gets underway in Egypt later this month.