By DAN KARELL
Rene Meulensteen could become the next European coach to move stateside.
According to a report by ESPN FC, the former Fulham manager and Manchester United assistant is being considered for the Philadelphia Union’s head coaching position by Union CEO Nick Sakiewicz, but a decision on the team’s next manager won’t be coming any time soon.
“Absolutely no decision has been made,” Sakiewicz told ESPN FC. “About three weeks ago, I suspended any kind of search activity for a new coach. I’m probably going to pick it up some time after the Open Cup. But [the new coach is] completely undetermined.”
The Union have been without a permanent head coach since John Hackworth was fired on June 10 with a record of 3-7-6 to start the season. Former assistant coach and longtime MLS defender Jim Curtin is serving as the interim head coach, and has led the team back into the Eastern Conference playoff race and to a place in the U.S. Open Cup final.
Sakiewicz confirmed that the Dutchman Meulensteen is on the team’s head coaching short list, confirming links between Meulensteen and the club. Meulensteen’s last job was a three-month stint as manager of Fulham, unsuccessfully helping them avoid relegation as one of three managers used that season.
Meulensteen has also had short stints with Anzhi Makhachkala in 2013, Brondby in 2006-2007, and with Qatari clubs Al-Sadd (2000-2001) and Al-Ittihad (1999-2000). Meulensteen is perhaps best remembered for his time as an assistant at Man United under manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
What do you think of this news? Do you see Meulensteen joining the Union? Think they should hold on to Curtin?
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