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Philadelphia Union


November 29, 2012
Union name Curtin assistant coach

Philadelphia native Jim Curtin has been named assistant coach of the Philadelphia Union.
Philadelphia native Jim Curtin has been named assistant coach of the Philadelphia Union.
Linda Cutone/Sports Vue Images
CHESTER, Pa. – Philadelphia Union have rounded out their coaching staff with the addition of former MLS player Jim Curtin as an assistant coach. The club also signed current Assistant Coach Brendan Burke to a new contract

A 10-year Major League Soccer veteran and 2004 MLS All-Star, Curtin, 33, was most recently the head coach of the Union’s U-17/U-18 Academy teams and the Director of Curriculum Development at YSC Sports. Tabbed as the Union’s Reserve Team head coach in 2011, Burke, 30, was concurrently the club's assistant youth director and head coach of PDL affiliate partner Reading United A.C.

"We are excited to announce that Jim has officially joined our staff,” said Union Team Manager John Hackworth. “He has done an excellent job coaching in our Academy and at YSC the last three years. Jim's experience and knowledge of both MLS and the Philadelphia soccer market make him a great addition to our Club. Being able to retain Brendan, who has been a key member of our staff the last two seasons, was equally as important. Brendan's work ethic, experience as a head coach and understanding of our team will continue to be an invaluable asset."

Curtin grew up playing soccer in the Philadelphia region for youth clubs in Glenside and Council Rock – the latter on the same team as current Union defender Chris Albright. After a successful career at Bishop McDevitt High School, he moved on to play college soccer at Villanova University, where he was voted BIG EAST Rookie of the Year (’97) and twice named First Team All-BIG EAST. In 2001, Curtin was drafted by the Chicago Fire and went on to play more than 200 games, helping the squad to Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup championships in 2003 and 2006. In 2008, he was traded to Chivas USA, eventually retiring after the 2009 season. Curtin returned to his native Philadelphia soon after to join the staff at YSC Sports and the Union’s Youth Academy, leading the U-17 squad to the 2012 MLS Generation adidas Cup title.

“As a former player, I know how important it is to focus coaching and executive development on former players,” said Philadelphia Union CEO & Operating Partner Nick Sakiewicz. “We are very proud and honored that Jim Curtin has decided to join the Union’s First Team after working with our Academy. He is a great example of a former MLS player developing his post-playing career.”

Burke signed on as Reading’s head coach in 2008, after serving as its captain in 2007, and became the club’s most successful coach in its 15-year history. The 2010 PDL Coach of the Year, Burke has compiled a 61-14-13 record, the 2009 regular season championship and two trips to the PDL National Final Four in five seasons. He has built a program that has recently seen some of the nation’s top talent come to train and play for Reading before entering the professional ranks including Sporting Kansas City’s CJ Sapong (MLS Rookie of the Year 2011), Montreal Impact’s Andrew Wenger (2012 MLS SuperDraft No. 1 pick), FC Dallas’ Matt Hedges (2012 MLS SuperDraft No. 11 pick), Hammarby IF’s Billy Schuler (Swedish football), and Luke Mulholland (2011 USL-Pro Rookie of the Year). In 2013, Reading United is set to qualify for their fifth consecutive Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup knockout stage.

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