In spite of the care taken against possible injury and for which reason a rearranged lineup was fielded against Providence in the American Soccer League game on Sunday, the Bethlehem Steel F. C. did not escape unscathed. Upon the arrival home of the team this morning, it was disclosed that Jim Purvis ,one of the ten leading goal scorers in the circuit, and a candidate for the inside right position in the cup game next Sunday, is crippled with a turned ankle and will be fortunate if he recovers sufficiently to be used again this season.
Granger is the cup selection for the inside right position against the Ben Millers, of St. Louis, next Sunday, but his inclusion was doubtful up until last Saturday, when he returned to the lineup after recovering from an injury and showed to such an advantage that he will be available this weekend. Fortunately he has recovered for the management had planned to use Purvis in the event that Granger would be unable to play.
The Providence field is one of the worst in the league and other clubs have complained against it. The width is no more than fifty-five yards and as a result players are bunched and bodily contact is frequent. On such a field a team has no chance of resorting to a passing and scientific game, but must play a kick and rush game.
The Bethlehem Steel F. C. will have the Philadelphia F. C. to play in the first round of the American Soccer League cup competition which swings into action with the first round games to be played on or before April 18. Since Philadelphia plays its games on Saturday, the first round tilt will be in that city on April 17.
While the Phillies are not soaring high in the league standing, the playing of the club in recent weeks has been the sensation of the circuit. The Phillies have succeeded in mastering the league leading clubs and is a much stronger team at the tail end of the season than it was at the start. However, with the form displayed by the Bethlehem club in sailing through the cup competition, the Steel Workers should enter the game a strong favorite.
Incidentally both first and second round games in the American cup competition are drawn as away from home games, making it seven straight cup games in which the Steel Workers were forced to go away for their contests. If Bethlehem defeats the Phillies in the first round, the locals meet Newark at Newark in the second round.
The games to be played and decided on the grounds of the first named clubs, are as follows:
(New England District)
New Bedford vs. Shawsheen
Byes -- J & P Coats, Providence.
Brooklyn vs. Indiana
Philadelphia vs. Bethlehem Steel
Byes -- N. Y. Giants and Newark
New Bedford or Shawsheen vs. J & P Coats
Providence vs. Fall River or Boston
Newark vs. Philadelphia or Bethlehem
Brooklyn or Indiana vs. N. Y. Giants