The Bethlehem Steel soccer team had a hard training session today in preparation for the American League clash with New York F. C. at the Steel Field on Saturday. All the players are in good shape and the team selected will be able to travel the full 90 minutes at t op speed. New York will be at full strength with the exception of the outside right position, but that important cog in the lineup should be well taken care of by Buck Cooper, the former Harrison star.
McCamkland, the regular outside right of the Gothamites, is serving a 30 days' suspension handed out by the U. S. F. A. for fighting with Hardy, the inside right of Paterson, in the national cup game that ended in a tie March 11.
The Steel Workers are improving every game and any team that stops them will know they were in a game. In the early games they showed a tendency to play the methodical game that is good to look at but often lacking in results. They now swing the ball about from wing to wing with greater frequency and in this way the opposing defense has a harder time to stop them. They are also much better versed in the somewhat rougher style of game that pertains in this country and they have already acquired a reputation to be able to give and take with the best of them.
Fred Morley, the popular inside right of the J & P Coats team, collapsed after the game with Fall River last Saturday. Fred was badly gassed in France and he has never quite recovered. His many friends here hope to see him in his old position against Paterson next Sunday in the eastern final of the national cup.
Tommy Fleming and Jock Ferguson, two former stars in the old champion Bethlehem lineup are playing great soccer for Coats and they have had a lot to do with the success of the Pawtucket team. Fleming is the same dangerous player of old and he is always to b e found in the goal scoring list.
Tommy is tied for goal scoring leadership in the American League with McNiven, the center forward of the Steel Workers. While several of Whitey's goals were gathered by the penalty kick route, it must also be admitted that many of them were gained by that curving left foot drive deceived so many goalkeepers. Ferguson is still the same cool, reliable player he was while sporting the colors of Bethlehem.
Fall River will play here on Saturday, March 31. The Harold Brittan combination is not doing too well at present and a few more points on the wrong side of the ledger will place them dangerously near the second division of the table.
With two American League teams battling for the honor of meeting the Scullins of St. Louis in the National Cup final the critics who opined that the league would be a failure will find it hard to explain the present situation. Either Coats or Paterson will give the St. Louis representatives a lively 90 minutes.
Sam Fletcher, Jock Ferguson, Jimmy Campbell, Billy Kirkpatrick, Fred Pepper, Harry Ratican and Tommy Fleming are the only members of the old Bethlehem machine who are playing regularly at present. Most of them can still hold their own with the new luminaries in the game.