Coach Steve Corica is adamant Sydney FC are ready for the challenge of a top-of-the-table clash with a rejuvenated Western Sydney in their first derby of the A-League season.
The Sky Blues will visit the Wanderers for the first time at the new Bankwest Stadium in Parramatta when the cross-town rivals renew hostilities on Friday.
And they'll do so as occupants of the top two spots on the ladder after being the only two teams in the league to open the season with consecutive victories.
It's why Corica is predicting a closely-fought encounter.
"The derby's always tight. It's full-on. It's physical. It's what you want from a derby," Corica said after their 2-1 victory over Wellington on Sunday.
"We've looking forward to it, (as) I'm sure they are, at their new home ground.
"I've heard it's great, so I'm looking forward to seeing it and playing and be a part of it. It's obviously nice, both teams are up top at the moment."
Their positions on the ladder is certain to add further spice for a clash that has been dominated by the Sky Blues in recent seasons.
The Wanderers haven't claimed bragging rights since February 2017, which is also their only victory in their past 17 matches.
Markus Babbel's side have shown signs of life in their second campaign under the German coach, including last week's win over Melbourne Victory.
And while the defending premiers have been installed as favourites with the bookmakers, Corica doesn't mind being considered underdogs either.
"It doesn't matter. I think (the boys have) had the favourites tag for a lot over the years. I think they're used to it," Corica said.
"If you want to class us as underdogs, that's fine as well."
The rivalry's latest chapter will include plenty of subplots, beginning with McGowan brothers Ryan (Sky Blues) and Dylan (Wanderers) going head-to-head.
It will also be the first time Alex Baumjohann faces the Western Sydney switching over the winter, as well as Wanderers and ex-Sky Blues defender Matt Jurman.
Despite winning both their first two matches, Corica insisted there is plenty of improvement in his team.
"A little bit disappointed that the amount of chances that we created and we didn't score more goals," he said.
"Probably not so happy that they created quite a few chances as well. But there's three points. It's the start of the season. It's a process. We've got to build on this."
In other games in round two, new club Western United remain undefeated after splitting the points with Perth Glory 1-1 in their historic home-opener.
Newcastle and Central Coast also shared the spoils 1-1 in their F3 derby, where the VAR again stole the headlines over a penalty re-take.
And, lastly, Jamie Maclaren showed why he's a contender for the golden boot by netting twice in Melbourne City's 2-1 victory over Adelaide.
Australian Associated Press