O'Neill thrilled with Sydney FC's response to derby defeat

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The Sky Blues nipped any talk of a form slump in the bud with a professional display to see of Melbourne City at AAMI Park

Sydney FC midfielder Brandon O'Neill said the three points was the only thing that mattered on Friday night against Melbourne City after they lost for the first time in the A-League last week.

The Sky Blues got what they wanted as they outclassed 10-man Melbourne City 3-1 at AAMI Park to hit the 50-point mark with six rounds to go.

O'Neill's peach of a free-kick was sandwiched between two Bobo goals and saw the Sky Blues defeat City to get their premiership tilt back on track after losing to Western Sydney Wanderers in Round 20.

COMMENT: Sydney FC's defence should be revered not reviled

"It's a massive win," a delighted O'Neill told SBS.

"To play so well in the derby last week and not to get the three points - this game was just all about the three points.

"That's all we wanted. It didn't matter how well we played or goals conceded, we just wanted the three points to continue on our merry way and reach our goal of winning the championship and Premier's Plate."

Sydney host second-placed Melbourne Victory in the Big Blue at Allianz Stadium next week in what looms as the Big V's last chance to claw back Graham Arnold's league leaders.

Victory host Adelaide United on Saturday and will need to win to have any chance of catching Sydney over the next seven weeks.

The Sky Blues hit the front in the 24th minute via Bobo's penalty and although Nick Fitzgerald's stunning strike dragged City level soon after, Manny Muscat's red card before half-time put the hosts in a difficult position.

Ruon Tongyik was brought on at the break to shore up City's defence but the young centre-back conceded Michael Valkanis' side struggled in the second half.

"It was pretty tough, especially being a man down, and nothing really went our way second half," Tongyik told SBS. 

"Very disappointing the way we displayed ourselves. I guess we have to pick ourselves up for next week."

City visit Central Coast Mariners next week.


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