American soccer writing, history & data.
On September 7, 1907, the California Association Football League held its annual general meeting at Croll's Gardens in Alameda. Three teams from San Francisco, Burns Club, Scotia F.C. and Thistles, joined the five returning clubs. All three teams were made up of Scottish players made possible by the influx of foreign worker into the Bay Area as the region continued to rebuild.
The eight clubs would share four venues as home grounds. San Francisco would cross the bay to share the Webster Street cricket grounds in Alameda with the Vampires. The Independents would again share Freeman's Park, the home grounds of Albion Rovers. The Oakland Hornets and Thistles would share the old intercollegiate football grounds at 7th Avenue and California Street in San Francisco, And, Scotia and Burns would hare the stadium at Golden Gate Park.
The Albion Rovers finished undefeated with a record of 12 wins and only 2 draws. The Thistles were a distant second with 19 points, 7 behind the league champions. Burns Club had two points deducted from using an ineligible player dropping them from mid-table to next-to-last. But the team scored a surprise by winning the California Football Association cup 3-0 over the Vampires on April 5, 1908 at Freeman's Park.
During the season, tensions arose between the CFA and the CAFL due to the division of cup receipts. A proposal by the CAFL that 75% of the net receipts of cup games should go to the league was rejected by the executive committee of the CFA. The current arrangement held that the receipts of all games before the semifinals were pooled and 10% went to the CFA. The remaining 90% was divided amont the competing teams in the ration of one share for each game played. The 1907-08 season was the first time that the CFA had given the teams any portion of the receipts. The proceeds of the semifinals and final went to the CFA to defray the expenses of that organization and to provide medals for the winners and runners up.
In early February of 1908, a month before cup play started, the CFA held a meeting and agreed to a request from the CAFL to equally divide the preliminary round profits between the 10 contesting teams after 10% had been given to the CFA, regardless of the number of games played by each contestant. The Burns and Scotia clubs had no inclosed grounds of their own so there was no way for them to make revenue for the season's expenses other than membership dues. In late March, the CAFL treasurer reported a profit of nearly $400 had been made in early games of the cup competition which would be evenly divided among the competing teams and the CFA at the close of the season.
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