Coach Frank Yallop believes San Jose Earthquakes can continue their good start to the MLS season against Real Salt Lake on Sunday.
The Quakes sit second in the Western Conference, two points behind Salt Lake as they head into the crucial clash.
Yallop is without Steven Lenhart and midfielder Shea Salinas through injury but insists it gives other players a chance to impress.
“I wouldn’t say it is a nice test but it is a big test,” Yallop said.
“We come up against a team who have just lost their last game to Kansas so they will be ready to go. They are always a good team, dangerous in attack and well organised and have tended to get the better of us at times. ”
“But I have felt the last few times we have played them we have done okay in a lot of aspects of the game other than getting the three points. I think the opening game last year was a good example of us not getting what we deserved but that was a long time ago now.
“I feel them team has moved forward and I wouldn’t be surprised if we had another really good performance and came out here and won.
The match will also be a milestone for Earthquakes defender Jason Hernandez who will make his 100th appearance for the club.
Yallop will almost certainly play Hernandez with regular centre-back Victor Bernardez out for at least a month with a knee injury.
“You have got to luck at the fact we have had a good start to the season and the team has played well but now we have three or four guys out of the mix,” Yallop said.
‘We got through the last two games without Lenny which is good. We didn’t win in New York but we beat Vancouver and played well in New York.
“We have got a good squad and we have some players who are dying to play and I think that for me it is an opportunity for players who haven’t played yet who can play well for us to get their chance to play.”
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