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Report: Union remove interim tag, hire Curtin permanently

JimCurtinPhiladelphiaUnion3-NewYorkRedBulls (USATODAYSports)

Photo by Eric Hartline/USA TODAY Sports Images


The Philadelphia Union ownership and front office have apparently seen enough to make a decision on a permanent head coach before the end of the season.

According to a report from Goal USA, the Union have removed the interim tag from Jim Curtin’s job title and are set to make him the head coach through the 2015 season. The club are expected to issue a formal announcement on the new contract this week.

It’s good news for Curtin, who’s Union squad gave their all in a 3-1 defeat in extra time to the Seattle Sounders last week in the U.S. Open Cup final, with many wondering if Curtin’s job prospects would hinge on that performance.

Since taking over for John Hackworth on June 10, Curtin has led the Union to a 6-2-5 record in MLS play, including the team’s current five-match unbeaten run. In addition, he led the Union through to the U.S. Open Cup final, where they had to defeat the New York Cosmos and FC Dallas in overtime along the way.

With a contract in tow, Curtin can now concentrate on guiding the Union to the playoffs for just the second time in franchise history. The Union are currently in sixth place in the volatile Eastern Conference and are within an arms length of making it above the vaunted red line.

The Union have 38 points from 29 games played, two points behind the fifth-placed Columbus Crew, three points behind fourth-placed the New York Red Bulls, and four points behind the third-placed New England Revolution. The Union face the Crew twice in each team’s final five matches of the season.

The 35-year-old Curtin, a Philadelphia native, is in his first head coaching job since retiring as a player in 2008.


What do you think of this news? Do you feel that Curtin deserves the head coaching position? Think that the Union should have gone a different direction? Do you see the Union making the playoffs?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Curtin deserves a shot. It’s the talent gap that has held Philly back in the past. Curtin has the new group playing well together, after a slow start. Why blow it up now?

  2. I have not renewed my season tix and now I really have to decide if I want to. They still have not figured it out. Its time to blow up that staff and start fresh. If they are going to keep Curtin they need to get rid of everyone else that was affiliated with Hack and Nowak. If this does not work out then Sak and Curtin and the entire staff should be fired. They are playing better but the East is not going to get any easier next year. Will Curtin have the money to get us a quality striker and more defenders next year.

    • You are the smart one. I renewed my six seats last week. Had I known they weren’t even going to finish the season before deciding, I would have said no thank you. Were they playing better because of Curtin, or were they playing better to showcase so they could jump ship at the earliest convenience? He used Cruz in the cup final so I’m concerned about his ability to make game time strategy decisions…just like Hack.

      Oh well…maybe new ownership comes along and saves us…

    • Seriously?! As a fellow season ticket holder I can’t understand (and can’t stand) your lack of commitment to our club. I don’t know if Curtin is the right guy, but not renewing due to some uncertainty seems weak and fickle.

  3. I don’t understand the negativity. The Union were clearly under performing and he’s got them winning. There’s a whole new generation of ex players proving to be a cells to coaches. Why shouldn’t h be the next one?

    • So a few months and he’s a proven commodity? I don’t think so. Maybe if he coach for a year beforehand. This likely will blow up in their faces.

    • Because we’ve already been through the hiring from within thing with Hackworth, who was Nowak’s assistant. Now we hire the person who was Hackworth’s assistant. We are on the verge of 1 playoff appearance in 5 years and we are still hiring coaches from the same strain of coaches that have led us to nothing. There is no reason to think right now that Curtin won’t crash and burn just like Hackworth before him.

      Also, assuming you are a Quakes fan you should know from Mark Watson that getting an under-performing team to win does not mean anything.

      • I hope and believe Watson will gone at the end of the season, and I possibly the GM as well. Based on their team record,they both are big
        JN S

      • Yes, but the record with bringing experienced coaches from Europe has been even worse than hiring from within. Americans know how to coach a team to win as well as anyone in the world. They have a bad rap as soccer coaches because people don’t seem to be able to distinguish between coaching a team and “coaching” player development

  4. Wonder if this means Meulensteen will be brought in as Director of Soccer instead of coach? Seemed to be the case that something was still in the works there as recently as last week? Either way, though I like Curtin, I think this could have waited until the end of the season.


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