Injuries have provided rookies Mike Randolph, Josh Tudela and Ty Harden with the chance to prove themselves -- and they've been so good, in fact, it would be difficult for Coach Frank Yallop to replace them now, even with a full complement of players. Other players have been asked to switch roles. Landon Donovan, for example, has dropped into a playmaking role; he now has three goals and four assists in his last six games. Chris Klein, normally a right sided or central midfielder, has had to play several positions, most recently, right back.
Now that key players like David Beckham (who's fit to play) are returning from injury, Yallop is faced with one of those "good problems" for coaches, as greater competition for places forces players to be sharper. "That's why it would be such a big deal for us to get into the playoffs with a full complement of guys," says Klein. "If we can get in there and be healthy --- watch out."