The Swan Song
The close of the present soccer season will perhaps be the swan song for the Bethlehem soccer team if rumor which daily becomes more persistent means anything. As yet no official announcement has been made but since players are breezing about the doleful tidings it is taken for granted that such action is probably contemplated. For close to 20 years Bethlehem was identified in soccer and as a pioneer in popularizing the sport in this country was instrumental in bringing about the organization the sport today enjoys. As a missionary Bethlehem did a good job but unfortunately the encouragement and support warranted was not forthcoming here while in other cities fans rallied to the cause and are giving the team that which with the exception of a few hundred loyals was lacking here.
No Need of Begging
The rumor is by no means local but apparently has permeated to far distant cities. From St. Louis comes a query to verify the report along with the gossip that if soccer is abandoned in Bethlehem the franchise may be transferred to St. Louis. "Team would be very welcome here by press and public" is the message hurled half way across the continent from St. Louis. To the probable transfer of the franchise to the western city, it is believed no thought whatever has been given and if Bethlehem is playing its last season in major league soccer it is believed every player will be made a free agent, privileged if they prefer to continue in the sport, to affiliate with whatever team of their liking.
Not the Same Stamp
Fall River's decisive triumph over the Cleveland Burells in the grand final of the National cup competition was again convincing that the brand of soccer in the Middle West is not on the same plane with that in the East. National titles have been won in the east with such regularity that unless some drastic measures are resorted to, such as an attempt to import one of the stronger eastern clubs intact, there is little hope of this condition changing. Not in the next several years, at least. Soccer is extensively played and thrives in the Middle West and a championship every now and then blown that way would undoubtedly be to the best interest of the game.
Newark in the Market?
Tom Adams in charge of soccer affairs in Newark, N. J., had stormy sailing for many years but valiantly stuck to the task in fostering a club until finally forced to the wall. Tom's main trouble was lack of finances to develop the kind of team Jersey fans craved, and as a result each game marked a decrease in attendance. In spite of this failure Newark and vicinity is a fertile location for a first class soccer club and a team such as Bethlehem would undoubtedly go across big in the Jersey metropolis. Bethlehem, it is believed, would be welcomed by Jersey fans, if for no other reason than to have Archie Stark within their midst. If remembered correctly, Stark's soccer sill was acquired on Jersey soil and in his affiliation with other clubs was always a prime favorite there.