How Other View the Situation
Sentiment favoring the Bethlehem team in its stand against the American Soccer League and the determination to compete in the National Challenge Cup is by no means confined locally. Throughout parts of the New England district where Pres. "Bill" Cunningham is most strongly supported, scribes have been quite liberal in commending Bethlehem for the attitude taken and have not been a bit backward in deploring the fact that the Bethlehem team fell a victim of suspension. In Philadelphia, not represented in the league, writers point to the action of the American Soccer League as a grave mistake. Levi Wilcox, commenting on the decision of the head of the big professional loop, types the following: "The American Soccer League through its president made a grave mistake by suspending Bethlehem Steel, New York Giants and Newark from all rights and privileges of that organization. Bethlehem Steel, New York Giants, and Newark had a perfect right to join the National Challenge Cup competition which is conducted under the auspices of the United States Football Association, the parent body governing soccer football in this country. Even though the American League voted not to allow any of its members to participate in the tourney, the three clubs involved were not breaking the rules as Bethlehem, New York and Newark were not in favor of the rule, two of which voted against it, while one of them refused to have anything to do with the motion which was carried at a special meeting Sept. 10. The United States Football Association intervened on behalf of the Bethlehem Steel, New York Giants and Newark soccer clubs which were suspended by the American Soccer League for having entered the National Challenge Cup competition, conducted by the U. S. F. A. after the American Soccer League had voted not to. The new league, which was organized with the Giants, Bethlehem, and Newark, the prime move last week in New York, promises to be more evenly balanced after the clubs have once found their bearings. The clubs, through their delegates, all seemed anxious to get started, some of which already have played exhibition games with some of the leading American Leaguers. With nine clubs being represented there is every reason for believing, taking into consideration that each club has been established for several years, that they will also receive the necessary backing and support whereby none of them should face a deficit at the end of the season. One of the main features is the elimination of making trips on the rattlers, which was the case in the American League, when in some instances the teams had to leave the day before the game to arrive in Fall River, Boston and other New England cities in time for the kickoff. All of the clubs which signified their intentions of joining the new league will make the circuit so compact that neither Philadelphia nor Bethlehem, the two farthest clubs in the league, will not have more than two hours' traveling when playing away from home. These short cuts will also save the clubs during the season several thousands of dollars. This has been one of the biggest items on the American League's agenda -- and it has also sent more than one club on the financial rocks."
The New League
The proposed new soccer loop will in all likelihood be born in New York this evening when the nine representatives gather for the purpose of formally organizing. The foundation was laid a week ago when tentative plans were discussed and matters outlined and with a week's time during which to carefully consider the proposition, the delegates will be prepared to stamp the move with their final O. K. this evening. Officers will be elected and it is hoped that those who are chose will be men with executive ability, thoroughly familiar with soccer and who will work for the advancement and development of the sport. Armstrong Patterson, president of the U. S. F. A. is expected to come from Detroit, Mich., to attend this session and with him sitting in the new league need have no fear of any threats made by the American Soccer League. In fact, many believe that the birth of the new organization will be the death knell for the American loop and certainly that the only punishment the National Association can mete out is complete suspension from organized soccer.
The Paying Clubs
While the New England district is generally regarded as a hot-bed for soccer, not all the clubs flourish financially in that district. In fact, there are several in the American loop at present which seem to be tottering. Fall River gets the gate and with Fall River mentioned, that leaves the others out. New Bedford just about breaks even but rumors are prevalent that Providence, Boston and J & P Coats are plugging along hoping for a break that will put them on easy street. It will be recalled that the two New England clubs, Hartford and Springfield, were forced out of the circuit because of financial disaster. Every one of the above mentioned clubs will probably admit that Bethlehem was the best drawing card to invade that territory, and yet the local team was thrown out of the league.