Sydney FC will be keen to turn an uplift in form into three points and snap a three-game A-League winless run when they face Brisbane Roar at McDonald Jones Stadium on Monday night.
The Sky Blues won the Premiers' Plate in a canter but since the season resumption have won just one of four games.
"Obviously the Sydney FC culture and what they've built here, it's a big deal to lose a couple of games... we had a look at ourselves and where we could improve," midfielder Luke Brattan said on Sunday.
"It happens - there's been questions about 'after we've (won) the premiership, have we taken our foot off the pedal'... but it happens all around the world to the best teams.
"So we're not too worried but we did have a look at ourselves and work extra hard on the training pitch.
"We need a couple of good performances now going into the finals."
Brisbane's finals spot is locked in but they can rise as high as third or drop as low as sixth depending on results.
Sydney face the challenge of shutting down in-form Roar attacker Scott McDonald, who has scored six goals in as many games.
They will also have to break down Brisbane's resolute defence.
"They have five big boys at the back - three centre-backs that don't really move away from the 18-yard box," Brattan said.
"So we've got to be patient, move the ball and I think we've just got to wait until someone makes a mistake and punish them."
Brattan returns from suspension but right-back Rhyan Grant may have to wait for Sydney's final regular-season game against Western United to return from a groin injury.