Sydney FC coach Graham Arnold believes the different bounce and pace of the Allianz Stadium pitch will be an advantage for his side in their must-win ACL game against a weakened Shanghai Shenhua.
To advance from the group, the A-League premiers need to bet their Chinese opponent on Tuesday and hope Japan's Kashima Antlers score a home victory over second-placed Suwon Bluewings of South Korea.
While Shanghai Shenhua are running third in their domestic competition, they can't advance from their ACL group.
Captain and Colombian Giovanni Moreno will be their only foreigner, with his compatriot and fellow midfielder Fredy Guarin suspended and Nigerian striker Obafemi Martins injured.
Conversely, Arnold has a full squad to choose from and won't settle on his line-up until shortly before kick-off.
While Sydney lost their first two ACL home games, Arnold was adamant their knowledge of the Allianz Stadium surface was beneficial.
"We know how to play very well on this pitch, this pitch is not an easy pitch to play on," Arnold said.
"When opposition teams come, the field is very different to other fields and we know how to play great on it and we know how it works where other teams don't.
"The bounce is different and it's much faster than other pitches and we want a fast pitch because of the technical qualities of our players."
Arnold believes his team had benefited tactically from lessons learnt in the two home losses.
"We now have two or three systems ready to go and we can adjust during games," Arnold said.
His tactical acumen is acknowledged by the opposing coach.
"I saw two games here at this stadium at the end of last year obviously this is the best A-League team and very good tactically," Shanghai Shenhua coach Wu Jingui said through an interpreter.
He said he would field some younger players and others who hadn't got much of a run but was adamant his side would lift for their fans.
"Some of them have come a long way to be here so definitely we'll do our best, we'll try to play a fantastic game for them," he said.
"For this match we'll make some specific arrangements tactically."