The Globe -- Bethlehem
Tuesday, March 20, 1923
A Swing Along Athletic Row

Soccer Final to Be Played on Sunday
J & P Coats, of Pawtucket, R. I., finalist with Paterson F. C., to represent the East in the National Cup Trophy of the United States Football Association, will not be the opponents of Bethlehem on Saturday as per the American League schedule. Tom Cahill, secretary, has ordered that the cup game be played on Sunday and as a result Pawtucket will waive the right to cancel the game in this city. Critics fancy Paterson will be the finalist in spite of the aggregation of former Bethlehem celebrities who this season have sported the colors of the Rhode Island aggregation. However, there are others who are not quite as certain and contend that Pawtucket's decisive victory over Fall River last Saturday makes them an even rival. Former Bethlehem players who are included with the J & P clan and who last season played under the name of the Philadelphia F. C. are Whitey Fleming, the speedy and sure scoring wingman; Jock Ferguson, one of the best backs in the country, Neilson, Morley and Bethune.

Think Bethlehem Would Have Better Chance
Bethlehem would have a better chance against the Scullins of St. Louis in the National final, is the belief of many soccer followers, basing this opinion on the present showing of the local team. The Bethlehems unfortunately were eliminated both in the National and American cup competitions when the team was still in an experimental stage. One critic who has seen all the teams in the East in action speaks of Bethlehem as follows:

"It is unfortunate that the present Bethlehem aggregation was not signed prior to the Steel Workers competing in the National and American Cup competitions. Had that combination now sporting the Bethlehem colors been in there when the series started it is dollars to doughnuts that not in one, but in both competitions the Bethlehem team would still have been one of the contenders. Bethlehem, the way it lines up now, is a far better balanced team than either Paterson or Coats. From that we don't mean to convey that the Bethlehem team would have found both teams easy pickings, but from what we have ascertained through sizing up Paterson and Coats in their recent games -- and after witnessing Bethlehem in action as recently as last Saturday, we are not making any rash statements when we state that the Bethlehem clan is stronger than either of the Eastern final contenders."

It is true that Bethlehem is reported by the best balanced team in the East. As for the middle western teams it would be unfair to make any comparison for the simple reason that none of these teams have been seen in action. However, it is safe to say that at present there is not one outstanding weakness in the makeup of the Bethlehem squad on which the forward and back lines are equal in effectiveness, of offensive and defensive play. It took time to develop combination and teamwork but the goal has been reached and if the same crowd can be retained for another season it is quite likely that the trophies of the two big cup competitions will again be returned to this city to adorn the trophy room of the Bethlehem F. C.

Bethlehem vs. Winner of National Final
Would it be assuming too much to visualize a game or a series of two games between the Bethlehem F. C. and the winner of the National final. The Bethlehem team in the past has been known to do things and play games entirely unexpected. Regardless of whether the National Cup final goes to the East or the West it is possible that a series of two games could be arranged between the winner and the Bethlehem F. C. The Scullins seemed favored to cop the honors and in that event it is possible that with the games played in the East the champions could be brought to Bethlehem at a nominal guarantee. Or maybe the arrangements could be negotiated still more economically. It will be remembered that the Scullins offered the fabulous guarantee of $12,000 to have the final played in St. Louis but this bid was refused by the U. S. F. A. Should Bethlehem complete the season in the American League with more victories over both contenders for the Eastern finals, certainly the team should prove a big drawing card in the home of the Scullins. The negotiations would then probably resolve to playing two games, one in Bethlehem and the other in St. Louis, the teams plying on alien soil for expenses exclusively and let the managers take a chance on the game for any profit. That at least would settle all dis-

Bethlehem Steel Soccer Club