With eight clubs comprising the membership, a new professional soccer league was formally organized Monday evening in New York City with the sanction and cooperation of the United States Football Association. The new league is the outcome of the controversy in which Bethlehem, New York Giants and Newark were ousted from the American Soccer League and the latter in turn outlawed by the National Commission.
More enthusiastic than any previous meeting was the gathering of representatives and little time was lost in effecting the organization and planning for the schedule which will be launched this weekend with every club booked. It is expected that within the next few days the entire schedule will be adopted.
Men prominent in soccer and who have been vitally interested in its growth were elected officers of the new circuit. These include Captain Whitwell, of New York City, president; Levi Wilcox, of Philadelphia, first vice president; J. Barriskill, of New York City, second vice president; A. W. Cahill, of New York City, treasure and James Armstrong, formerly associated with the New York Giants, secretary. The Mr. Cahill who was elected treasurer is no relative whatever to the Thomas W. Cahill, an executive of the United States Football Association.
The eight clubs to comprise the league will have as its foundation the Bethlehem team, Newark and the New York Giants, the former members of the American Soccer League. The other clubs are Philadelphia, New York Celtics, New York Hakoah and New York Hispano. The first league games will be played over the weekend and it is planned to schedule twin bills over the weekend and it is planned to schedule twin bills over every succeeding weekend up to the end of the schedule. Of course dates for cup games will receive preference.
In the first league tilt Bethlehem has drawn rather stiff oppositions. The New York Giants will be here to clash with the locals on Saturday afternoon and on Sunday afternoon the same two teams will meet in New York.
Armstrong Patterson, president of the United States Football Association, who came on to New York from his home in Detroit purposely to attend this meeting, was present and instructed the new league along the lines of organization. He advised every club to secure the sanction of the respective State Associations which are affiliated with the National Association which in fact is merely a courtesy and following the usual routine. Until that sanction is received the status of the league members remains tentative.
While no trouble whatever is anticipated from the Pennsylvania Association in giving its sanction, the New York clubs may a bit of difficulty in securing a sanction of the Southern New York Association. This is surmised due to the fact that Nat Agar, owner of the Brooklyn Wanderers in the American Soccer League, is vice president of the state association. However, whatever objections, if any, are made, the league is prepared to meet them.
It is understood that the U. S. F. A. has forwarded circular letters to all teams affiliated with the American Soccer League and players of those teams, notifying them of the outlaw status of the circuit. It is believed that quite a few of these clubs will now experience trouble in keeping their players and club intact. It is understood that quite a few have signified withdrawing rather than to submit to an outlaw status.
The Brooklyn Wanderers have already been hit for it is understood that three of their Jewish stars, former members of the famed Hakoah aggregation, have already withdrawn because of the outlaw aspect and will probably associate with the New York Hakoah. The players are Eisenhoffer, Drucker and Grosz and if they do join the Hakoah club in the new circuit, the latter will comprise with very few exceptions the original Hakoah team to tour this country.
Acting strictly in accordance with the U. S. F. A. the new league is not heeding the threats of the American Soccer League. In fact they are acting entirely ignorant of the existence of another circuit and are contributing their every effort to the success of the new loop which is encouraging forecast.
Capt. Whitwell, the president, is the former organizer of the United States Soccer League and in assuming the office of chief executive of the new league, has surrendered the name of the United States Soccer League to the new organization.