Western Sydney Wanderers coach Mark Rudan blamed his side's poor first-half performance for the 3-2 defeat against Western United.
The Wanderers are out to finish in the top six of the A-League but suffered a setback when Rudan's former club took the points on Sunday evening.
Western Sydney were made to pay for a poor opening 45 minutes when Western raced into a 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Aleksandar Prijovic and Ben Garuccio.
Rudan was so disappointed he made changes at the break with big names Dimi Petratos and Terry Antonis taken off after failing to impress, while Jack Rodwell was withdrawn with a hamstring strain.
Ziggy Gordon, Ramy Najjarine and Steven Ugarkovic all came on and the changes had an immediate impact as the Wanderers fought their way back into the game.
Tomer Hemed pulled a goal back from the penalty spot in the 51st minute before Garuccio's scorpion-kick wonder goal restored the two-goal deficit.
Ugarkovic pulled another back five minutes from time to set up a lively finish to the encounter but Rudan's men were unable to find the equaliser and Western held on.
"It was a game of two halves, really," Rudan told reporters after the game. "You can't give a team like that a two-goal lead at half-time, away from home.
"Much better in the second half, I thought we were really flat in that first half, but much better, made some changes and should have got something out of it."