For the Wellington Phoenix, the equation is simple. Pick up a point from either tomorrow night's away game against Sydney FC or Sunday's home game against bottom-of-the-table North Queensland Fury and the sixth, and final, A-League play-off spot will be theirs.

But even if the Phoenix lost both, Newcastle Jets - the only other team now in contention - would have to beat both Perth Glory at home on Thursday night and Central Coast Mariners away on Sunday in the last game of the regular season starting minutes after the Phoenix finish their clash with the Fury.

They would also need to sneak ahead of the Phoenix on goal difference to get up.

And, as an even longer shot, the Phoenix could climb to fifth if they won their remaining two games and Melbourne Victory lost to Adelaide United away on Friday night.

While the Phoenix should pick up the point they need, it will be a huge ask to do a lot better.

Even though Sydney FC are now out of the play-off race after drawing 1-1 with Newcastle Jets, the defending champions will be keen to salvage something from a disastrous season in which they have won only seven of 28 games - less than half the wins they scored last season.

They will, however, as playing through champions, represent Australian in the Asian Champions League which offers US$1.5 million to the winning team.

Their cause, as they prepare for the always tough Champions League, will be helped at the Sydney Football Stadium with Ricki Herbert forced to put out a severely under-strength Phoenix team.

Already without Ben Sigmund and Manny Muscat who will serve the second match of their two-game suspensions, the Phoenix have also lost captain Andrew Durante to suspension for the last two regular season outings. He will be joined on the early flight home by injured midfielder Vince Lia.

Herbert will, however, be encouraged by the form shown by recalled striker Chris Greenacre who celebrated the club's 100th A-League outing with his 13th goal for them.

Greenacre took special pride in that it was the first time one of his goals was actually the match winner.

"It's always nice to score, and I know every goal is important but there is nothing better for a striker than to get the winner," said Greenacre. "It was a great cross from Marco [Rojas]. As soon as he got the ball I was desperate to get into the box because his crosses are quality and this one was inch perfect.

"Marco has been outstanding since he came into the side. He has won us games with his crosses and scored a couple himself.

"It was a fantastic performance by our lads. We created some good chances and the fact we only scored one was down to the brilliance of Eugene Galekovic.

"He is rated the best keeper in the league and he showed it. One save in particular, from Nicky Ward, was amazing."

Greenacre and the injured Paul Ifill are leading the goalscoring stakes for the Phoenix with seven - one more than Tim Brown and Dylan Macallister. Adelaide's Sergio van Dijk, kept scoreless by the Phoenix on Saturday night, is a runaway leader with 16.