The announcement made Friday that Lehigh University had successfully negotiated for the purchase of the vast athletic field maintained by the Bethlehem Steel Company, at Center Street and Elizabeth Avenue, created deep interest in athletic circles. That such negotiations were pending was not even hinted although it was rumored that the athletic authorities at Bethlehem High had a longing eye on the excellent athletic plant.
Most concerned were the soccer loyals who have been following the fortunes of the Bethlehem Steel team before and since it became one of the greatest soccer machines in the country. By the agreement in the purchase of the field provision is made for the soccer team for the use of the field for this year. However, while it is understood that Lehigh is visualizing a stadium to seat fifty thousand persons, soccer interests believe that the realization of the plan is still some distance off.
In the meantime the field will probably be used by the college for soccer and lacrosse. In that event it will be in use practically only four months out of each year and, unless some arrangement is made for the continuance of Bethlehem Steel soccer on the field, the plant would lie idle for the other eight months.
Soccer interest, when interviewed this morning had little or nothing of a definite nature to say in regard to the field. However, it was gleaned in the interview that those who have fostered the sport in Bethlehem for a good many years are whole-hearted in their efforts and there is every reason to believe that the team will continue for a good many more years, whether privileged to play on the new college ground or not.