MELBOURNE Heart coach John Aloisi is confident Harry Kewell's return coupled with a newfound resolve in his side will be the catalyst for a surge up the A-League ladder.
Asked about Kewell after his side's 1-1 draw with Western Sydney on Saturday, Aloisi said: "It was a big positive. We know what Harry can do and he just lifts everybody around him.
"Him walking out onto that pitch, his team-mates lift. That's the reason we got him at our club.
"We've had a lot of injures early on in the season and that's why we kept on saying we know what we have to do, we know where we're headed and it showed in that short glimpse where Harry came on.
"The game turned for a good 10 minutes where he started keeping the ball, all the other players around him seemed to lift with confidence as well and we started to combine and play some good combination football.
"Harry brings that to a team."
The challenge for Aloisi will now be keeping Kewell fit and getting that type of performance out of him on a regular basis.
"A lot of people have questioned (Kewell's) attitude and desire to play football," the Heart boss said.
"He's worked so hard to get onto the pitch. He only trained with the team once yesterday but he was desperate to play. It just goes to show the person he is.
"Whether we can play him longer than 20 minutes next week, hopefully we can but whether he can start I don't know. We don't want him to break down again."
They Wanderers, meanwhile, may be enduring their worst run of form since the start of last season but Western Sydney coach Tony Popovic insists his goal-shy side has nothing to worry about.
The draw with Heart sees them fall five points behind league leader Brisbane Roar on the back of three games without a win.
It's the club's leanest run since they picked up just one point from their first three games at the beginning of their debut campaign last season.
"I haven't really thought about that too much," Popovic said when asked about the side's winless run.
"We're only a third of the way through the season and we've lost only one game in nine.
"I think we're playing some good football.
"We got a result today, probably not the one we deserve d but overall we're pleased with the first third of the season and now for the second third we'll look to improve even more and then we'll see where we are after 18 games."
The Wanderers certainly created enough opportunities to beat the Heart but a mixture of poor finishing and some brilliant goal-keeping from Andrew Redmayne kept them at bay.
Popovic's side have managed just 10 goals from their nine games this season and appear to be struggling to find the back of the net without injured strikers Tomi Juric and Brendan Santalab.
Asked if his side was missing the injured duo, Popovic said: "We still created the chances ... you always want all your players available but today it wasn't to be.
"Labby (Haliti) had some chances, Aaron (Mooy) had some good attempts on goal. (Mark) Bridge and Youssouf (Hersi) were very lively.
"In the attacking third we're getting to that last point but we couldn’t finish it off."
An even first half came to life late on when David Williams put the Heart in front before Mooy's clinical effort from just outside the box levelled things up before the break.
The Wanderers then dominated possession and chances in the second half and almost stole all three points at the end, only for Matthew Spiranovic's header to strike the post.
"Sometimes you win games when you create a lot less," a philosophical Popovic said.
"(Yesterday) it was important we kept our discipline although things were going for us in the second half in front of goal.
"We missed some chances, their keeper made some great saves but it happens.
"It was important we still got something out of that game."