Perth Glory coach Ian Ferguson concedes skipper Jacob Burns needs to be smarter about his on-field discipline after he copped a mandatory one-match suspension for an accumulation of A-League yellow cards.
Burns will miss Friday night's crunch clash with Melbourne Victory at AAMI Park after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season in Saturday night's 1-1 draw with Wellington Phoenix.
Although some of the yellow cards against Burns this season have been borderline decisions, his record of five bookings in as many matches isn't pretty reading.
Burns went into the book against Wellington for a slight nudge on Vince Lia in the 66th minute.
Although the incident itself wasn't malicious, it proved to be the tipping point after two earlier incidents in which Burns had trod a fine line.
Burns remains one of Glory's most important players, and his absence against Victory will be keenly felt, especially with defenders Scott Jamieson and Michael Thwaite also a chance to miss the game due to international duties.
"It's disappointing. He's just come back from injury and now he's suspended again," Ferguson said of Burns, who was back after missing three games with a quad injury.
"But that's just the way the boy is.
"He plays with his heart on his sleeve. But again, he's got to be a little bit smarter.
"We'll have a little chat about that."
Ferguson was happy with the return of striker Shane Smeltz, whose 62nd-minute strike was his first goal of the season.
Wellington striker Jeremy Brockie snared the equaliser 11 minutes later, giving the 25-year-old Kiwi his fifth goal from his past four games.
"He (Brockie) is a terrific player and there's a sense of confidence around those sorts of players," Wellington coach Ricki Herbert said.
Although seventh-placed Wellington made a slow start to the season, it is just four points adrift of third spot ahead of home games against Western Sydney Wanderers and Sydney FC.
Free-scoring former Belgium international Stein Huysegems is poised to quit Welllington Phoenix at the end of the season after negotiations over a new contract reached a seemingly unbridgeable impasse.