Crook acknowledged his side had their poor moments in the win over Perth, but praised his troops for digging in to claim the three points
|By JOHN GRECO
He knows they possess enough quality, but Sunday's come-from behind win over Perth showed Sydney FC coach Ian Crook his side also have the character to make an impact this A-League season.
The Sky Blues trailed 1-0 at the break but turned the game around in the second half with goals to marquee men Alessandro Del Piero and Brett Emerton.
It was far from vintage stuff from the Sky Blues, with the dismissal of Glory defender Steve Pantelidis for hauling down Emerton in the box for the equaliser proving a huge turning point.
It is now back-to-back wins for Sydney and they are up to fifth, with experienced trio Pascal Bosschaart, Jason Culina and Adam Griffiths all still to come back into the side.
While they are a long way from their best, Crook believes the signs are good.
"We were disappointing in a lot of areas but at the end of the day I have to give the boys a lot of credit and say they dug in," Crook said.
"Someone said to me the sign of a good side is a side that can win when they are playing not at their best.
"The first half didn't go how we wanted it to but the second half came out with right attitude."
Emerton, whose delightful chip over Danny Vukovic 20 minutes from time proved the difference, said there could be no repeat of his side's first half showing if Sydney were to continue winning games.
"The things we did well last week against Western Sydney we didn't do today especially in first half," Emerton said.
"We didn't press the ball well enough, when we got it back we didn't keep possession so there's a lot of room for improvement.
"Like Crooky said, the sign of a good side is to grind out results when you're not playing well.
"It's something we didn't do last season. When we played well was the only time we won football matches.
"To do that early in the season is a positive sign... back-to-back wins is encouraging signs."
Crook said he was hopeful of getting a couple of his injured stars back for next Saturday's trip to the Central Coast to play the Mariners.
Defenders Bosschaart and Fabio and attacker Joel Chianese are all expected to be available for selection, while Culina and Griffiths are still a couple of weeks away from a return.