MELBOURNE Victory continued their dominance over Adelaide United with Carlos Hernandez netting the decisive goal in a 2-1 triumph - the Reds' first defeat of the campaign.
Victory notched their 10th consecutive win over United with the win at Etihad Stadium on Friday night.
A previously undefeated Adelaide could not break the Victory curse despite taking a first-minute lead through Iain Fyfe. Melbourne hit back through Robbie Kruse on 21 minutes - the striker's fourth goal in as many matches - before Carlos Hernandez conjured a winner of 68 minutes.
Victory may be the Jekyll and Hyde of the Hyundai A-League, but they always put on their best show against their bitter rivals and their extraordinary double-figure winning streak against the Reds surpasses any other era of dominance of one team over another in an Australian national league.
It is now more than three years since Adelaide last beat Melbourne in a league game, while it is over four years since the Reds last came to Etihad Stadium and took all three points.
It was a success which looked a long way from achievable when a defensive lapse allowed Adelaide to take a shock early lead. In fact the Reds were the better team before Kruse kick-started Victory with a pearler of a low shot from outside the box.
From that point on it was all Melbourne and the home side deserved to take the lead when Hernandez started and finished a superb attacking move which embodied the style of play Ernie Merrick loves to play.
The slender margin flattered Adelaide given Kruse had multiple chances to extend the lead while Tom Pondeljak hit the upright. A late effort from Inseob Shin rattled both the post and Melbourne's nerves but the home side held tight to record their fourth win of the season and move into third ahead of Gold Coast United, who they meet at Etihad next Saturday.
Adelaide's first loss of the season could see them lose top spot on the table should Brisbane comfortably beat Sydney on Saturday with the top two to meet next week at Suncorp Stadium.
Melbourne Victory 2 (Kruse 20, Hernandez 68)
Adelaide United 1 (Fyke 1)
Crowd: 16,269 at Etihad Stadium