A week ago the knives were being drawn and the axes sharpened for Frank Farina, the beleaguered Sydney coach. But his side scrambled to a 3-2 win against Melbourne Victory in a Saturday night thriller, and the confidence those three points brought has reinvigorated the Sky Blues.
On Friday night, they showed the benefit of that morale-boosting win, displaying self-belief, skill and desire to shrug off an insipid Melbourne Heart at AAMI Park, winning 2-0 and firmly establishing themselves in the top six.
Now it is John Aloisi, Melbourne Heart's coach, who is staring down the barrel after his side blew another opportunity to shine on the big stage of free-to-air television. Heart have not won a game since February - when they beat Sydney 3-1 - and the way they played, they will be lucky to do so by next February.
This is a team playing without belief or conviction, a side that looks like it has forgotten how to win.
Losses in the next two fixtures, against Newcastle and Adelaide, could virtually kill off their season barely a third of the way through.
Michael Mifsud had the perfect opportunity to break Heart's three-game goal drought in the 14th minute but like so many Heart players this season he fluffed his lines. The Malta captain had just Vedran Janjetovic to beat, but fired straight at the Sydney goalkeeper.
That was as good as it got for the hosts in a first half in which Sydney looked by far the superior side.
Bigger, stronger, quicker, with better ball control, and, crucially, confidence, the Sky Blues began to boss the game.
Alessandro Del Piero seems to go at walking pace for much of the match, but when you can can pass the ball, split defences and conduct the tempo the way he does, you hardly need to break sweat.
He was ably assisted by the energetic Brett Emerton and the skilful Nick Carle playing in the deeper pivot role, while Joel Chianese and Chris Naumoff were always busy in forward areas, with former Heart man Richard Garcia providing his customary fizz.
It's one thing to bemoan your luck and the fact you have lost key players through injury, as Aloisi has done with some cause, for the past few weeks. But that happens to all teams.
It's another to play without any enthusiasm or energy, and it was Heart's lack of intensity in that first period that was most noticeable.
For a side bottom of the league and winless in five games, one thing they could have expected was full-blooded intensity. But after Del Piero put the visitors ahead from the penalty spot in the 27th minute after Rob Wielaert upended Chianese in the area, Heart appeared to collapse like a pricked balloon.
Save for Andrew Redmayne in goal, Sydney could have been in a much more commanding position. Chianese's goal in the shadows of half-time, when Aziz Behich gave him far too much room, giving them a deserved two goal buffer.
Redmayne saved from Chianese earlier when the Sydney forward found himself with just the goalkeeper to beat, and then he denied Carle's shot.
The visitors consolidated their advantage in a second half in which Heart at last found some more energy and enthusiasm, even if it wasn't enough to get them back into the game.
SYDNEY FC 2 (Alessandro Del Piero 27m pen, Joel Chianese 45+1m) bt MELBOURNE HEART 0 at AAMI Park. Crowd: 8941. Referee: Alan Milliner