“the best professional soccer team in America” – Clay Berling

In 1973 CLAY BERLING, the founder and Publisher of SOCCER AMERICA, the largest soccer publication in the USA, wrote in a letter to Wildcat’s owner and manager Paul Ingram, that the Connecticut Wildcats was “the best professional soccer team in America.” Between 1973 and 1974 Berling went on to publish more articles in Soccer America about the Wildcats than any other domestic or foreign team.

Although the Wildcats had 3 players playing on the USA National team and the Wildcats captain was also the USA National team captain, what Mr. Berling found most noteworthy about the Wildcats was that it was a team made up entirely of American citizens ( 80% born in the USA). This was an unheard of occurrence at a time when some other Pro teams had as few as 10% of their players having Americans citizenship.

A copy of Berling’s letter, along with press releases, player interviews, and significant memorabilia accompany a rich historical account of the Connecticut Wildcats in Ingram’s soon to be published book.  The book follows the Wildcats from formation to generating record-breaking attendance at Hartford’s Dillon Stadium, to the final dissolution of the American Soccer League and the tremendous influence the former Connecticut Wildcats players have had in helping form US Soccer as we know it today.

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