The Globe -- Bethlehem
Wednesday, March 31, 1926
A Swing Along Athletic Row

Several New Slants
"The Ben Millers don't have a logical argument in their protest against coming East to meet Bethlehem Steel F. C. in the grand final of the National Cup competition, admitting that the game was originally scheduled for the West," is a report heard. And after analyzing the progress of events in the cup competition of the last several years, are convinced that whatever argument may be advanced by the St. Louis authorities, there is but a weak basis to their protest. The U. S. F. A. has decreed that the game must be played on Ebbetts Field, Brooklyn, N. Y., on April 11, and although the protest somewhat clouds the issue, it is felt sure that St. Louis will be on hand at the appointed time.

had Last Big Cup Game
In pointing out the protest as being illogical, St. Louis really had the last big cup contests season before last, when Fall River went West to capture the National honors. Last year the Western aggregation came East and it will be recalled that the factions of the U. S. F. A. and the American Soccer League were then at odds and that the competition was not really a real test of soccer supremacy, with practically all of the strongest teams in the East competing and confining their competition to a league cup affair. That in itself should justify the executive committee of the U. S. F. A. in ordering that the game be played in the East.

And Still Another Argument
There is still another argument that must bear weight in refusing to lend an ear to the protest of the St. Louis officers. In the division fight for championship honors, semi-final and final round cup games must be played on neutral fields. For the grand final the same precedent was established. St. Louis wants the grand final in St. Louis which, with the Ben Miller's of that city winning in the Western division, would hardly be fair to the Eastern champion. In playing at Ebbetts Field, the home of the Brooklyn National League baseball club, the field is strictly neutral, for the park is not included as the home lot in the roster of the American Soccer League clubs. In the event that the grand final had to go to the West, Chicago, or some other neutral zone and not St. Louis would be the logical place for consideration.

Should Vote to Postpone Game
The Bethlehem soccer management did not ask for anything out of the ordinary when submitting a request to be relieved of one of the two hard games over the weekend and if refused by a vote of other clubs in the league it would seem that their motive was more or less selfish and influenced by a lack of Eastern pride. Bethlehem Steel stands as the topmost representative in the American League to battle for soccer supremacy. To win the National championship is an achievement that will reflect on every other club in the loop and particularly on the circuit as a while, in being supreme over the Western leagues in the sport. Rather than jeopardize the chances of the Steelmen in the big game, the other clubs should lend their aid. By thus sacrificing what gains might be attained by playing the Steelmen wouldn't it be a far better display of sportsmanship to vote to postpone one game? There is an element of change that with two hard games the week previous to the grand final, an injury to any of the players selected for that tilt would severe damage on the strength of the team. "Player baiting," is another element that might mean disaster.

Bethlehem Steel Soccer Club