American Soccer League (1933–1983)

American Soccer League
Country United States
Founded 1933
Folded 1983
Promotion to None
Relegation to None

The American Soccer League has been a name used by three different professional soccer sports league in the United States. The second American Soccer League was established in summer 1933 following the collapse of the original American Soccer League, which lasted from 1921 until spring 1933. The new league was created on a smaller scale and with smaller budgets. This league existed until over-expansion and financial limitations led to its collapse in 1983. A successor league with the same name started in 2014.


In the fall of 1933, the second American Soccer League was established, surviving until 1983. Like the original ASL, this league operated primarily in the Northeastern United States for much of its existence. In order to compete with the North American Soccer League, the ASL went national in 1976, expanding to the Western United States by adding teams in Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, and Tacoma. In addition, Bob Cousy was hired as commissioner and the league changed the standings scoring system to more closely resemble the NASL. ASL teams were awarded 5 points for a win, 2 points for a tie, and 1 point for each goal up to a maximum of 3 per game. The NASL awarded 6 points for a win and 3 for a tie, with 1 for each goal up to 3 per game. The ASL also had a limit on the number of foreign players each team could have in an effort to gain popularity among American fans.

While this expansion gave the ASL national exposure, the league and teams were no match financially for the NASL. On rare occasions, an ASL team would outbid a NASL team for a recognizable player, but more often than not, the better players in the ASL were offered more money to jump to the NASL. The high point in the history of the league may have been the 1976 championship game between the Los Angeles Skyhawks and New York Apollo; Skyhawks won 2-1 in front of over 9,000 fans. But by 1979, attendance was down, every team was losing money, and the league finally folded in 1983. After the ASL II ceased operations, several of its teams formed the original United Soccer League, which played seasons in 1984 and 1985.


Year Winner (number of titles) Runners-up Top Scorer MVP
1933-34 Kearny Irish (1) New York Americans Archie Stark
Razzo Carroll
Not Awarded
1934-35 Philadelphia German-Americans (1) New York Americans Millard Lang
1935-36 New York Americans (1) Baltimore Canton Alex Rae
1936-37 Kearny Scots (1) Brooklyn Hispano Charlie Ernst
1937-38 Kearny Scots (2) Brooklyn St. Mary's Celtic Fabri Salcedo
1938-39 Kearny Scots (3) Philadelphia German-Americans Bert Patenaude
1939-40 Kearny Scots (4) Baltimore S.C. Charlie Ernst
1940-41 Kearny Scots (5) Philadelphia German-Americans Fabri Salcedo
1941-42 Philadelphia Americans (2) Brookhattan John Nanoski
1942-43 Brooklyn Hispano (1) Brookhattan Chappie Sheppell
1943-44 Philadelphia Americans (3) Brooklyn Wanderers Tommy Marshall
1944-45 Brookhattan (1) Philadelphia Americans John Nanoski Steve Rozbora
1945-46 Baltimore Americans (1) Brooklyn Hispano Fabri Salcedo Ray McFaul
1946-47 Philadelphia Americans (4) Brooklyn Wanderers Bill Fisher Servile Mervine
1947-48 Philadelphia Americans (5) Kearny Scots Nicholas Kropfelder John O'Connell
1948-49 Philadelphia Nationals (1) New York Americans Pito Villanon John O'Connell
1949-50 Philadelphia Nationals (2) Kearny Celtic Joe Gaetjens Joe Maca
1950-51 Philadelphia Nationals (3) Kearny Celtic Nicholas Kropfelder John Donald
1951-52 Philadelphia Americans (6) Kearny Scots Dick Roberts Benny McLaughlin
1952-53 Philadelphia Nationals (4) Newark Portuguese Pito Villanon Pito Villanon
1953-54 New York Americans (2) Brookhattan Jack Calder Cyril Hannaby
1954-55 Uhrik Truckers (7) Brooklyn Hispano Jack Ferris Jack Ferris
1955-56 Uhrik Truckers (8) Elizabeth Falcons Gene Grabowski Jack Hynes
1956-57 New York Hakoah-Americans (1) Uhrik Truckers George Brown John Oliver
1957-58 New York Hakoah-Americans (2) Ukrainian Nationals Lloyd Monsen Walter Kudenko
1958-59 New York Hakoah-Americans (3) Ukrainian Nationals Pasquale Pepe Yuriy Kulishenko
1959-60 Colombo (1) Ukrainian Nationals Mike Noha Andy Racz
1960-61 Ukrainian Nationals (1) Falcons S.C. Herman Niss Mike Noha
1961-62 Ukrainian Nationals (2) Inter-Brooklyn Italians Peter Millar Peter Millar
1962-63 Ukrainian Nationals (3) Inter S.C. Ismael Ferreyra Peter Millar
1963-64 Ukrainian Nationals (4) Boston Metros Walter Chyzowych Abbie Wolanow
1964-65 Hartford S.C (1) Newark Portuguese Herculiano Riguerdo Alberto Falak
1965-66 Roma S.C. (1) Newark Ukrainian Sitch Walter Chyzowych Walter Chyzowych
1966-67 Baltimore St. Gerards (1) Newark Ukrainian Sitch Jorge Benitez Myron Worobec
1967-68 Ukrainian Nationals (5) New York Inter Ivan Paleto Robert Waugh
1968 Washington Darts (1) Rochester Lancers Gerry Brown
1969 Washington Darts (2) Syracuse Scorpions Jim Lefkos Robert Waugh
1970 Philadelphia Ukrainians (6) Philadelphia Spartans Juan Paletta
Willie Mfum
Albert Trik
1971 New York Greeks (1) Boston Astros Charles Duccilli Bob Hatzos
1972 Cincinnati Comets (1) New York Greeks Charles Duccilli Ringo Cantillo
1973 New York Apollo (1) Cincinnati Comets Eddy Roberts Helio Barbosa
1974 Rhode Island Oceaneers (1) New York Apollo Ringo Cantillo Ringo Cantillo
1975 New York Apollo (2), Boston Astros (1) co-champions José Neto José Neto
1976 Los Angeles Skyhawks (1) New York Apollo Jim Hinch Jim Hinch
1977 New Jersey Americans (1) Sacramento Spirits José Neto Ringo Cantillo
1978 New York Apollo (3) Los Angeles Skyhawks Jim Rolland Jim Rolland
1979 Sacramento Gold (1) Columbus Magic Ian Filby Poli Garcia
1980 Pennsylvania Stoners (1) Sacramento Gold Mal Roche George Gorleku
1981 Carolina Lightnin' (1) New York United Billy Boljevic Billy Boljevic
1982 Detroit Express (1) Oklahoma City Slickers Brian Tinnion Brian Tinnion
1983 Jacksonville Tea Men (1) Pennsylvania Stoners Jeff Bourne Peter Simonini

Complete team list


External links

  • Historical overview of the Soccer Wars
  • Year by year standings
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