New England midfielder Brian Kamler has provided a steadying influence for a Revolution side that has not tasted defeat in seven matches entering Saturday's contest with Kansas City.
After missing five games (and most of a sixth) with a hamstring injury, Kamler returned to the starting lineup July 11 -- when the Revolution claimed an away draw with the Chicago Fire that set them on their current unbeaten run.
A recurring hamstring problem put him out of the team in the July 24 draw in San Jose where the Revolution lost a late two-goal lead, but he's been back since, where New England has again wrapped a pair of ties around a 3-0 victory in Dallas.
Kamler admits that the past three matches are an indicator of further progress, if not the most optimal of solutions.
"It wasn't bad," said Kamler. "It would have been nice to take nine points out of nine, but five points of out nine isn't bad."
Kamler believes that his team is missing a little extra something in order to convert draws into victories. The Revs have won just twice in the seven-game unbeaten streak.
"It seems like we are missing that extra something that is keeping us from clicking," said Kamler. "We are searching for it. We withstood the first half in D.C., and we couldn't plug the dam. We got a nice goal from Steve [Ralston] and Andy [Dorman] came in and scored 30 seconds after he entered the game."
Finding the necessary tools in order to vault up the table is difficult, but Kamler notes that the Revolution are continuing to return most of their injured stars, with Adin Brown coming closer to match fitness and Rusty Pierce featuring for the first time since April on Aug. 7, in order to peak for the finish.
"Sometimes, it just happens and it clicks," said Kamler. "Maybe we already are clicking, and we haven't figured it out yet. With everyone coming back or expected back in the next few weeks, [their presence] should make a difference."
Kamler emphasizes the importance of every point. Critics slammed the Revolution for not attacking in numbers in their most recent home match against the Crew, where the teams shared four goals before the half -- then scored no more. Kamler notes that the Revolution must take the points presented to them.
"We have to be solid in each and every game," said Kamler. "Every game is important as it comes down to the wire. We have to take points as they come. We'll take one point, but we obviously want the three points."
The former Creighton star predicted that playoff positioning will sort itself only on the last matchday.
"The league is bunched," said Kamler. "The Metros seem to have a good hold on first place, but funny things can happen in soccer. I think it may end up coming down to who wins the last game to see who finishes first or second or third. I think each of those spots is within striking distance for us."
Kyle McCarthy is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.