Youngsters Taking to Soccer
That soccer promises to be played in this vicinity more extensively than ever before and is developing uniformly with the trend throughout the country, is indicated by the activities of the Blue Mountain League over the weekend period. The league, with six teams, two of which will probably be entered by Lehigh University, gives promise of enjoying the most successful season since its organization and to add to the bright outlook is the interest taken in the game by the youngsters. The junior division of the league is well under way and the officials are elated over the conception of the sport displayed by the novice. Football at present is occupying the center of the stage but once the season of the American college game begins to wane followers will then divert their attention more particularly to soccer. Bethlehem Steel will again have a team that will be entered in all the important fixtures and with many of these games to be played on the local field, the followers are in for a good share of the sport. The reports of the interest of soccer in foreign countries and the monster attendance credited to the big games in many instances no doubt are considered as highly colored and greatly exaggerated reports. These reports, however, have been verified as being true and correct and have been brought home to us by persons right in our midst, members of the Bethlehem Steel champions, a good many of whom have returned from the Scandinavian tour. The record shows that in the fourteen games played, Bethlehem beat the best Swedish elevens seven times and battled with honors even five times, losing as said before just twice, once by a 3 to 2 score and the second time 3 to 1. So interested were the busy Swedes in the games that 154,000 paid to see the Americans play, and it is said that about $75,000 was taken in at the games by the Swedish Football Association, which conducted the tour. The Swedish fans were so enthusiastic about the Americans and their showing that Secretary Cahill, of the United States Football Association, who managed the trip returned with nearly $2,000 worth of trophies of all kinds. Well might the Swedes acknowledge the skill of the Americans, for didn't they tally twenty-two times in the fourteen games against fourteen by the home clubs? Seven of the games were played at the Stadium in Stockholm, where the Olympic games were once held, and 97,000 attended, among whom were the King and Crown Prince of Sweden. Another game was played at Copenhagen, Denmark and 17,000 were present. Twenty-four thousand attended two contests at Gothenburg, Sweden. Four were played in small towns in the provinces yet these attracted 16,000.