Former Melbourne Victory champion Kosta Barbarouses has helped Sydney FC to a 2-1 win over their A-League rivals.
The Sydney star scored the winning goal in Sunday evening's tense encounter at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium and made good on his pre-game promise not to celebrate.
With the match tied at 1-1, Barbarouses scored against his old club in the 68th minute after Rhyan Grant's shot bounced off the crossbar in heavy traffic.
The 16,116-strong Sydney crowd went wild, but Barbarouses was stoic as he made good on his word not to react if he scored against his former team.
"It was an important game for him; all strikers want to score goals. He got off the mark two weeks ago and we want him to continue scoring," said coach Steve Corica.
"It's a big game, a lot of pressure for him obviously playing his old club, and we're just pleased that he scored again, and a vital goal at that."
The assist from Grant was just as important in his 200th match for the club.
For Victory, it was a hostile welcome to the scene of last season's 6-1 loss in the finals to their Sydney counterparts.
And in case they had forgotten the dismal result, an enormous banner graced the northern end of the ground as a reminder, reading "one fateful night in Sydney..." along with illustrations of each of Sydney's six goals from the match.
International duty and injury robbed Victory of at least seven starting players, making the visitors an understrength but dangerous opponent.
"There wasn't pressure because of (the finals result). There was more pressure because of the players they had out and, if we took the game lightly, we could have had a long afternoon," Corica said.
"The boys did extremely well - they worked extremely hard. We pressed a lot higher in the second half. We didn't give them opportunities to play with the ball and we got our rewards from constant pressure."
Prolific Victory striker Ola Toivonen opened the scoring in the 45th minute with his fourth goal of the season.
However, Sydney responded with two goals in seven minutes - the first from Adam Le Fondre in the 61st minute, followed soon after by the winning Barbarouses goal.
Victory have won just one of six games this season, while Sydney are second on the ladder with a game in hand.
Victory next play Adelaide United at Coopers Stadium, while Sydney FC travel to Perth to face the Glory.
Australian Associated Press