By Fred Nonnemacher
Soccer Revival Looks Encouraging
That Bethlehem or this district would be represented by a soccer team of the highest caliber next season is possible and depends largely on the encouragement and support assured the venture. Although no definite action has been taken it is learned from authoritative sources that the transfer of the Philadelphia F. C. back to Bethlehem is being considered and the promoters are quite enthusiastic over the project. In speaking to one of the parties interested in brining the team back and also associated with the management of the Philadelphia clan, it was learned that while the matter is being considered, it is a bit too early to definitely decide, but that some action will be taken during the Summer and if plans can be devised assuring only expenses in fostering the team in Bethlehem, this city will be represented in the American Soccer League next year and in all likelihood, will participate in the American and National cup classics. The season just closing was one of the most discouraging since the inception of the Bethlehem team and the Blue Ridge League which later assumed the name of the Bethlehem and District Soccer Association. When the Bethlehem team disbanded everything went to smash and the little soccer playing that was indulged in by local celebrities was with teams in neighboring cities. Included in these lineups, the Bethlehem talent stood out prominently above that of the home clubs and their inclusion in the lineup was solicited as a wedge to strengthen the teams. Regardless of the local conditions, soccer fans believe that the sport is due for a general revival in Bethlehem next season and base their contention on the interest stimulated in the game in neighboring cities and towns. The sand lot teams should be encouraged and no doubt will. Just what plan will be suggested in boosting the sport has not been determined but it is hinted that as a mater of civic pride, efforts will be made to have the Chamber of Commerce cooperate in devising some scheme to inspire a greater interest. The fact that the Bethlehem Steel F. C. in years past gained greater laurels for this city than any other athletic group or individual and played more extensively nationally and internationally than any other athletic team or group, will be strongly impressed on those who will be asked to assist in making the transfer of the team back to Bethlehem possible. The expense of fostering the team here, it is said, would be trivial in comparison of the cost of operating in Philadelphia. This is due to the fact that the majority of the players are employed in Bethlehem and maintain their homes here so that really the only expense involved would be in providing the guarantee for visiting soccer clubs.