1973 National Soccer League

League president: Joe Piccininni
League secretary: Ivan Habus

New clubs and name changes

In January 1973 Hamilton Apollo decided to change their name to Hamilton City and London German-Canadians became London City.

Clubs and players

First Portuguese


Founded: September 23, 1956

At the beginning of the season First Portuguese strengthened their team with wee Walter Muir on loan from Toronto Metros. Peter Duerden came from Montreal Olympique to make his debut in a 3-1 win over Ukraina on July 2.

Hamilton City
Formed:
Head Coach:
Key players:

Hamilton Croatia


Founded: 1957
Head Coach:
Key players:

Hamilton Italo-Canadians
Formed:
Head Coach:
Key players:

Homer
Formed:
Head Coach:
Key players:

Kitchener Srbija
Formed:
Head Coach:
Key players:

London City Soccer Club


Founded: February 14, 1973
Stadium: Cove Road Field, London, Ontario
President: Markus Gauss
General manager: Harry Gauss
Head Coach:
Key players:

London City were officially formed in 1973 but had strong links to the London German-Canadians and took over their franchise in the NSL.

Melita
Formed:
Head Coach:
Key players:

Melita joined the NSL from the Toronto and District Soccer League.
When Al Murphy scored a goal and at the same time broke his leg against Hamilton City on July 27, he became the fourth Melita player to break his leg that season.

Montreal Cantalia
Formed:
Head Coach:
Key players:

Montreal Cantalia rejoined the league after a 10 year absence. Before the start of the season they imported six professionals from Europe. One was Alex Bandl who had played in Montreal previously but lately had been playing in Mexico for Atalante.

Ottawa Tigers


Founded: 1965
Head Coach: Sandro Rausa
Key players: Roberto de Angelis

Polonia
Formed:
Head Coach:
Key players:

St. Catharines Heidelberg


Founded: 1952
Head Coach:
Key players:

Serbian White Eagles


Founded: 1968

In a bid to wrestle the league supremacy from Toronto Croatia, Serbian White Eagles imported nine players and a coach from Yugoslavia. They had a $70,000 budget, double that of 1972, giving coach Mladen Saric of Galenika in Yugoslavia carte blanche to find the players he wanted.

Toronto Croatia


Founded: 1956
Head Coach:

Toronto Croatia paid $25,000 for the services of Josko Glucic and Ante Ivkovic from Hajduk Split for four month, but it would develop that they had left their team without permission and were told by FIFA to return to Hajduk.

Toronto Hungaria
Formed:
Head Coach:
Key players:

Hungaria monthly budget of $5,000. Picked their players from various leagues around Canada and the U.S, none of the players being Canadian-born. Tibor Molnar came from New York. After four games for the Metros in the NASL, fullback Jim McDonald also came to Hungaria.

Toronto Italia


Founded: 1972

Toronto Italia had a working budget of $150,000, fired their coach Hector Marinaro before the season started.

Sport Association Ukraina


Founded: May 16, 1948
Head Coach:
Key players:

Review of the season

Toronto Hungaria and Toronto Ukraina opened their season on Thursday May 17. Mirko Basic scored a goal in the 47th minute to give Hungaria a 1-0 victory over Ukraina.

Toronto Croatia won the league championship.

Toronto Hungaria won the playoff championship.

Results and standings

                      GP W  L  T  GF GA Pts
Toronto Croatia       30 22  4  4 71 23  48
Serbian White Eagles  30 22  7  1 66 21  45
First Portuguese      30 17  5  8 52 33  42
Toronto Hungaria      30 17  6  7 68 35  41
Toronto Italia        30 16  9  5 55 37  37
Homer                 30 14  8  8 58 35  36
London City           30 12  9  9 47 43  33
St. Cath. Heidelberg  30 12 11  7 37 39  31
Hamilton Croatia      30 10 11  9 55 53  29
Melita                30  8 12 10 37 45  26
Ukraina               30  9 16  5 45 48  23
Hamilton City         30  8 15  7 39 58  23
Montreal Cantalia     30  8 15  7 39 58  23
Hamilton Italo-Can.   30  4 17  9 20 64  17
Serbja Kitchener      30  4 21  5 29 77  13
Polonia               30  5 22  3 30 83  13
Ottawa Tigers were suspended on August 21, 1973.

Leading goalscorers:  
1. John Fahy (Hungaria)    24 gls 
   Keith Summers (Ukraina) 24 gls

Top Goalie:  
Blagoje Tamindzic (Serbian White Eagles)

Play-off final 
October 19, 1973 at Stanley Park, Toronto
Attendance: 2,110
Toronto Hungaria 2 (Allan Callender, Tibor Molnar)
Toronto Croatia 1 (Aleja Solak)

NSL Cup Final
October 21, 1973 Stanley Park, Toronto
Referee: Bill Divorski
Toronto Hungaria 3
Toronto Croatia 1
* Game cancelled with 30 minutes remaining due to a riot by fans.

Canadian Open Championship
October 28, 1973
Toronto Croatia 3
West Indies United 1

Exhibition games:
May 23, 1973 C.N.E. Stadium, Toronto
Attendance: 13,281
Canada Selects 0
Arsenal 1 (Charlie George)

June 12, 1973 Lansdowne Park, Ottawa
Attendance: 2,500
Ottawa All-Stars 1 (Nino Flamini)
Belenenses (Portugal) 4 (Quinito 2, Pietra, Ramalho)

June 16, 1973 Stanley Park, Toronto
Attendance: 7,196
First Portuguese 0
Belenenses (Port.) 2 (Joaquim Ramalho, Francisco Gonzalez)

Sources: Toronto Star