Jim Curtin open to joining USMNT as assistant coach
Jim Curtin has done an exceptional job in helping turn the Philadelphia Union into one of the top MLS franchises, and although Curtin still has goals he'd like to achieve in Philadelphia, he would be open to leaving the club for a first-ever national team position.
Curtin admitted in a recent episode of "The Crack Podcast" with former U.S. men's national team players DaMarcus Beasley and Oguchi Onyewu, and soccer fashion designer Mabricio Wilson that he would leave his position with the Union to become an assistant coach with the USMNT if the opportunity presented itself.
"Whoever they choose, if they choose Jose Mourinho, if they choose [Carlo] Ancelotti, if they choose Jesse Marsch, I would also be their assistant," Curtin said. "Of course I'd love to coach the national team, if that's what you're asking. But I said this before [about being an assistant] and I mean what I say when I say it..that's how important I think this  World Cup is."
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Curtin has served as head coach of the Union since 2014, most recently leading the club to growing success in MLS and Concacaf tournaments. The Union lifted a first-ever Supporters' Shield in 2020 before reaching the Eastern Conference Finals in 2021 and MLS Cup in 2022.
Curtin is a two-time MLS Coach of the Year (2020, 2022) and also watched his Union squad reach the Concacaf Champions League semifinals in 2021 during their debut in the competition. His continued trust in homegrown players has also led to former talents Brenden Aaronson and Mark McKenzie work their way into the USMNT, while Paxten Aaronson, Anthony Fontana, and Jack De Vries have all earned European moves over the last two years.
U.S. Soccer has yet to make any decision regarding the current USMNT head coaching vacancy, although Curtin's longtime friend and former teammate Jesse Marsch has been linked as a possible candidate. Curtin remains focused on the upcoming season with the Union, which will kick off on Feb. 25, but also is keeping one eye on a potential future representing the USMNT. =
"I think coaches have to be humble enough to say, if they choose Jesse as the guy, I'd love to be Jesse's assistant, I'd be honored to," Curtin said. "I could share maybe some defensive ideas that I have, that I think would be helpful. If whoever's in charge decides we want to be a transition team, go out and hire whoever you think is the head coach, but get the best guy in the world right now at transition, you can't leave any stone unturned."
Curtin's contract with the Union is set to expire at the end of the 2023 MLS season unless a new deal is agreed upon by year's end. The Union kick off their league schedule on Feb. 25 against the Columbus Crew at Subaru Park.