One new team, Hartford, has been admitted to membership, the Connecticut club taking the place of the now defunct Springfield outfit. Many new faces some of international reputation will make their league debut during this weekend. The class of soccer displayed in the exhibition games has whetted the appetite of the fans who are eagerly looking forward to the greatest season ever, and considering the caliber of the new players secured followers of the sport should not be disappointed.
The schedule will be played in two parts this season, and the two leading teams in each half will engage in a round robin series immediately following the completion of the second half for the D. B. von Bremen Cup, emblematic of the league championship.
Below is a brief summary of the clubs and their prospects with a resume of the new players engaged. Taking the clubs in alphabetical order, we commence appropriately with the league champions.
Bethlehem -- Will be able to field the complete team which won the pennant last season, and in addition, James McConnell, center forward formerly of Providence, and M. McMeekin, a fullback from Arthurlie, Scotland, have been secured. A finely balanced team from goal out, the champs will be hard to dislodge from their present position.
Boston -- Runners-up last season, the Hub team commences with a weakened defense owing to the transfer of Tom McMillan, crack right back, to New Bedford, and the failure to date to obtain the signature of goalie, Jock Davidson. Several promising recruits have been signed, notably Milton Gavin and William Gonsalves, two native born youths, and John Solloway, a goalie from Chorley, England, all of whom have displayed sterling form in the pre-season exhibition games.
Brooklyn -- Will field practically the same eleven which carried the club to the final of the American League series last season, the only change noted being R. Curtis of J & P Coats for Johnny Reid who was transferred to the Pawtucket club in this exchange of inside forwards. On paper, Brooklyn appears capable of finishing in a better position than it did last year.
J & P Coats -- In addition to most of last season's players, the Threadmen have secured Johnny Reid, veteran inside forward from Brooklyn, Findlay Kerr, crack goalie of Fall River fame; W. Langley, a forward from Canada; Jimmy Lyons, center forward formerly of Providence; Charles Henry, a fullback who gained quite a reputation in British Army circles, and W. McIntosh a halfback late of New Bedford. Should these latest captures live up to their reputation, the Pawtucket side will prove a dangerous actor in the coming campaign.
Fall River -- The National champions always rated one of the finest teams in the country have secured the services of Willie Harper, famous Scottish Internationalist goalie; Ned Tate, idol of Fall River fans, has returned tot he fold after a season's sojourn with J & P Coats, and Percy Barlow, a promising native born center forward has been added to the roster. The close of the season should find the Marksmen at or near the top.
Hartford -- The babes of the league, recruited for the most part from the other American League clubs, with Bain and Owen, a fullback and center forward respectively from Canada, have a hard row to hoe. In Tom Blair, goalie; Tewfilc Abdullah and Bob Hutchinson, forwards, all of Fall River; Harry Cowan, fullback from New Bedford; Willie Ballantyne, of Boston, the Connecticut team has the nucleus of a strong team.
Indiana Flooring (N. Y. Nationals) -- Open the season with most brilliant prospects, Bob Millar, manager of the Floorlayers, during the closed season scouting trip in Scotland captured six well known Scottish stars in George Henderson, Rangers; J. Warden, Dumbarton; R. Walker, Kilmarnock; J. Slavin, Hearts; M. Wilson, Clyde and J. McKecknie, Portsmouth. With such a galaxy of stars, Indiana seems well set for a record season. The team is to be run by the N. Y. Giants (National Baseball League) owners.
Newark -- is at present "wrapped in mystery," no account of its players, old or new having been announced.
New Bedford -- with a wealth of seasoned players, the Whalers, in their exhibition games have already given evidence of much power, strengthened by the inclusion of Tommy McMillan, Boston's right halfback, and Willie "Red" Ballantyne, inside forward of Boston and Clyde fame. The Whalers, who finished fourth last season, are one of the favorites for premier honors this season.
New York Giants -- With its noted scoring line intact, and strengthened by the signatures of Maximillian Gold, left winger, and Alex Fabian, brilliant goalie, both of Hakoah, the Giants look forward to a most successful season. Despite rumors to the contrary, Erno Schwartz, their popular outside right will again wear the colors of the Giants, being due to arrive here from Vienna within 10 days.
Philadelphia -- Intends placing an All-Irish eleven on the field when the coming season gets underway. The services of several stars drawn from the finest soccer clubs in Erin have been secured and their play will be looked forward to with much interest by soccer fans throughout the country. There presence alone should give a much needed filip to the game in Philadelphia.
Providence -- Added no fewer than eight new players, all of first class ability. Manager Fletcher has unbounded confidence in these newcomers and with an even break, the Clamdiggers should certainly be up there when the honors are given [...] Beattie, outside right, and Johnny Dick, halfback, returning to Providence after a brief sojourn in Scottish second division circles, the team is immeasurably strengthened all around. The newcomers are: W. Stevenson, goalie, Arthurlie; G. Almer, fullback, Third Lanark; F. Falconer, halfback, Be'ness; W. Agnew, forward, Port Vale; H. Hutchinson, forward, Rangers "A"; Bob Finlayson, forward, and brother of the Providence halfback, from Vale of Leven, and Bardell, a fullback from Canada.
The weekend schedule follows:
Boston vs. New York Giant. Referee, George Lambie.
J & P Coats vs. Philadelphia. Referee, W. Lethbridge.
Indiana Flooring vs. Providence. Referee, James Walder.
Bethlehem vs. New Bedford. Referee. D. Scott.
Brooklyn vs. Bethlehem. Referee, C. Creighton.
Fall River vs. Giants. Referee, R. Carroll.
Hartford vs. Philadelphia. Referee, J. Stirrup.
Newark vs. Providence. Referee, J. Hayes.
Indiana Flooring vs. New Bedford. Referee, Tom Cunningham.