Nov 30, 2020
One of ten inaugural franchises in the renegade National Professional Soccer League - one of two competing attempts to launch true "Division One" soccer in North America (the other being an officially FIFA-sanctioned 12-team United Soccer Association) in the spring of 1967 - the Clippers were unquestionably the NPSL's best club.
Stocked with a pipeline of top Yugoslavian imports (including NPSL All-Stars Ilija Mitic and Mirko Stojanovic), the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum-based club captured the regular season title with 19-8-5 record (23 points better than the second-best Baltimore Bays), and were undefeated at home. The Clippers bested the Bays in the two-game NPSL championship final (4-2 on aggregate) and also claimed an unprecedented "treble" by defeating the division runner-up St. Louis Stars for the league's post-championship "Commissioner's Cup."Survivors of an off-season NPSL-USA merger, the Clippers continued their winning ways in the new 17-team North American Soccer League - tying for most wins (18), scoring the most goals (71), posting the second-best point total (185), and sending five players to the 1968 NASL All-Star team. But due to a quirk in the league's distortional divisional points system, the club oddly missed the four-team playoff cut - and were denied a chance to defend its NPSL title.