The Year in American Soccer – 1936

American Soccer League

The New York Americans finally won their first league title, and did it in convincing fashion, beating out Baltimore Canton by 9 points. This was a good season for Baltimore, which had finished below .500 last season, but surged four places to finish second. The Kearny Scots made a major comeback, finishing in 3rd, their best showing to date in the ASL. The Philadelphia German-Americans fell to 4th place, but they went on to win the National Challenge Cup over St. Louis Shamrocks. Brookhattan and Brooklyn Hispano both took major dives this year, with Hispano falling to last place. Alex Rae of Newark Germans was league high scorer with 28 goals. The New England Division cancelled their season due to industrial conditions and lack of financial support.

   Final American Soccer League Standings, 1935-36

                     - Metropolitan Division -

Before the season, Brooklyn became Brooklyn St. Mary's.
   (GF-GA stats through 3/29/36)
                              G    W   T   L   GF  GA  PTS
New York Americans           24   18   3   3   40  23   39
Baltimore Canton             24   12   4   8   39  37   28
Kearny Scots                 24   11   5   8   34  24   27
Philadelphia German American 20   10   5   5   45  46   25
Newark Germans               22    8   5   9   43  40   21
Brooklyn St. Mary's Celtic   19    6   8   5   43  44   20
New York Brookhattan         22    8   3  11   27  34   19
Kearny Irish                 23    6   4  13   34  46   16
Brooklyn Hispano             22    5   3  14   30  42   13

LEAGUE CHAMPION:  New York Americans

LEADING SCORER: Alex Rae, Newark Germans (28 goals)

                       - New England Division -
Season Cancelled.

Amateur League & Cup Champions

New York State Senior Challenge Cup: German-Hungarians
New York State Qualifying Cup: Yonkers Rangers
German-American Soccer League (New York): D.S.C. Brooklyn (Major Division); Hempstead (Premier Division)
Metropolitan League (New York): Swedish (Premier Division); Shamrock Rovers (1st Division); Metropolitan Cup: Norwegian Turn
New Jersey State Challenge Cup: Highlander
West Penn Challenge Cup: Heidelberg
Keystone League (Pittsburgh): Heidelberg
Rowland Cup (Maryland State Open): Canton
Stewart Cup (Md): (No competition)
Peel Cup (Illinois State): Maccabees A. C.
National Soccer League of Chicago: Sparta FC
St. Louis Soccer League: Burke Undertakers
St. Louis Municipal League: El Rey Chile
California Senior Challenge Cup: Vikings
John O. Bellis Perpetual Trophy: Rovers

National Team/Olympic Games, 1936

The United States Football Association decided after some discussion to send a team to the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, despite the unpalatable political situation. However, heavy snowfall during the winter of 35-36 wreaked havoc with attempts to raise money for team preparations and it was only three weeks before the Olympics that Joe Barriskill, the USFA secretary transferred just under seven thousand dollars to the Olympic Committee to fund the team.

Two trial games were played in Brooklyn before the team was selected, both on the same day. One pitted the regular squads of the Philadelphia German Americans against the Brooklyn Germans, the other two pick up teams the Blues against the Yellows.

The starting line up for the Blues was: Dresmich – Chambers, Zbikowski – Sheppell, Begley, Fiedler – Chimielewski, Ruddy, Martin, McCloskey, Sheppell. The starting team for the Yellows was: England – Stoll, Czerkowicz – Guyda, Anderson, Martinelli – Ritchie, Drinkworth, Rae, De Rostaing, W. McEwan. Substitutes were Narraccini and Valie for the Blues and Amrhein, Fisher, Lutkefedder, Althhaus and Keiner for the Yellows. The Blues won 3-1.

Seventeen players were selected from these games, of which nine were from the German-Americans, three from Brooklyn, and the rest from elsewhere across the country. Elmer Schroeder was again the manager. The team set off for Germany without having played a single game together.

The team played quite well together considering the lack of practice. When the team arrived in Germany they played two games, both against teams from Berlin. The first game against B.F.C. Viktoria ’89 ended in a 2-2 tie. In the second game the U.S. team beat Union S.C. 2-1. The Italian team was made up of students, who were all attached to leading Italian clubs and many of whom were later to have outstanding careers. One of them was an American, Brooklyn born Alfonso Negro, who didn’t play against the U.S., but played in the semi-final against Norway and scored a goal in Italy’s 2-1 win.

In the Olympic competition, they were paired off in their opening game against Italy, which was favored to win the tournament. But the US was something of a surprise. With their greater strength, they held the Italians to a scoreless draw through the first half. Italy rallied in the second however, and was soon taking hard shots. Seven minutes in, the Italian fullback Rava was sent off for a dirty tackle, but the Americans couldn’t take advantage of the man-up situation. A few minutes later, Italy’s right wing, Frossi, spotted a high ball coming down, which was misplayed by Charles Altemose, who had expected the ball to bounce. Because the grass was so wet, the ball skidded, and Frossi, anticipating that, sent it in to give Italy a 1-0 lead. They held on to that lead for the rest of the game, and the United States took an early exit. Italy went on to win the gold medal over Austria which took silver.

As for the US game against Italy, the Italian Almanach “Illustrato Almanacco Del Calcio” records that Rava was sent off in the 53rd minute. However, an Associated Press report on the game that appeared in the New York Times notes as follows. “Fiedler suffered torn ligaments in his knee when pushed roughly by Piccini, of the rival team. Weingartner (the referee) “put the thumb” on the Italian, ordering him from the game. Three times he tried to get Piccini to leave but finally gave up. A half dozen Italian players swarmed over the referee, pinning his hands to his sides and clamping hands over his mouth. The game was formally finished with Piccini still in the line up.”

After the U.S. was eliminated the team played three games before returning home. On August 9 in Cologne the U.S. defeated Gau XI Mittelrhein 1-0, and in the second game played in Hanover on August defeated Nordsachsen 3-2. But in the third game played on August 17 were beaten 4-1 in Bremen by Gau VIII Niedersachsen.

                    National Team Results, 1936:
    1936 Totals:  0W,  0D,  1L
Aug 03 36  L 0-1  Italy                     +Berlin, Germany (OLY'36)

International Tours

Botafogo of Brazil: April 14, 1936 through April 16, 1936. Results: 2 wins, 0 draws, 0 losses.

4/14/36  Botafogo 1, St. Louis Shamrocks 0 (at St. Louis)
4/16/36  Botafogo 3, St. Louis Shamrocks 0 (at St. Louis)

Maccabi of Israel: September 27, 1936 through November 22, 1936. Results: 5 wins, 2 draws, 5 losses.

Roster: Beth-Halvef, Birstein, Donnerfield, Elsner, Epstein, Felt, Herman, Liberman, Machlis, Merimowitsch, Metalon, Oscharoff, Pollack, Panz, Reznich, Schlager, Sedi, Weinberg, Zelivansky.

9/27/36   Maccabi 6, New York Stars 0 (at New York City)
10/4/36   Maccabi 1, Philadelphia Passon F.C. 0 (at Philadelphia)
10/11/36  Maccabi 1, American League Stars 0 (at Brooklyn)
10/18/36  Maccabi 2, Michigan S. S. C. 2 (at Detroit)
10/25/36  Maccabi 1, Illinois S.S.C. 0 (at Chicago)
10/28/36  Maccabi 2, St. Louis Shamrocks 3 (at St. Louis)
11/1/36   Maccabi 2, Boston Celtics 3 (at Boston)
11/3/36   Maccabi 7, New Jersey State Stars 1 (at Newark)
11/5/36   Maccabi 0, Philadelphia Passon 2 (at Philadelphia)
11/8/36   Maccabi 1, American League Stars 4 (at New York City)
11/15/36  Maccabi 1, Sparta 1 (at Chicago)
11/22/36  Maccabi 0, Chicago Maccabi 4 (at Chicago)

The College Game

Intercollegiate Soccer Football Association Champion: (No Award)

Middle Atlantic Intercollegiate Soccer League: Princeton
Middle Atlantic States Athletic Conference: Swarthmore
New England Intercollegiate Soccer League: Brown
California Intercollegiate Soccer Conference Champion: California

College All-American Squad, 1936:

              - Middle Atlantic District -
G  - Stewart, Pennsylvania
RF - Ward, Yale
LF - Robie, Harvard
RH - Dorman, Harvard
CH - Carson, Pennsylvania
LH - Pearson, Swarthmore
OR - Coerr, Yale
IR - Pond, Yale
CF - Scott, Pennsylvania
IL - Hollowell, Swarthmore
OL - Wood, Harvard

               - New England District -
G  - Corn, Brown
RF - Kay, Springfield
LF - Powell, Harvard
RH - Henry, Brown
CH - Spahr, Springfield
LH - Church, Brown
OR - Badger, Yale
IR - Schoupel, Amherst
CF - Margeson, Brown
IL - Lessell, Yale
OL - Wood, Harvard

Other Action

1936 National Challenge Cup Final: The ASL’s Philadelphia German-Americans defeated the St. Louis Shamrocks 3-1 on May 3 (after tying them 2-2 on April 26) to take the Cup.

1936 National Amateur Cup Final: On June 14, Brooklyn DSC Germans defeated Pittsburgh Castle Shannon 2-0 for the title.

National Junior Cup Champion: Hatikvoh F.C., Brooklyn.