Earnie Stewart - Philadelphia Union - Ali Curtis

Philadelphia Union sporting director Earnie Stewart and former New York Red Bulls sporting director Ali Curtis recently interviewed for the newly-created US men’s national team general manager position, sources have told MLSsoccer.com.

Created in the months following the USMNT’s failure to qualify for the World Cup, the USMNT GM will be responsible for hiring the next full-time head coach of the national team. Dave Sarachan has held the head coaching position on an interim basis since Bruce Arena resigned last fall.

Stewart, 49, was hired as Philadelphia’s sporting director in October 2015 after spending nearly a decade as an executive at two different clubs in Holland, where he was born and raised and spent the bulk of his playing career. He recorded 101 caps for the USMNT, appearing in every match for the US at the 1994, 1998 and 2002 World Cups. Since Stewart took over in Philadelphia, the team made the playoffs as the Eastern Conference’s sixth seed in 2016 before finishing eighth in the East last year.

A former MLS player and longtime executive in the league office, Curtis served as New York Red Bulls sporting director from December 2014 until shortly before the start of the 2017 season. The 39-year-old replaced former Red Bull defender and manager Mike Petke with head coach Jesse Marsch in one of his first moves on the job and helped build the New York teams that won the 2015 Supporters’ Shield and finished first in the Eastern Conference in the 2016 regular season.

It was reported in February that Atlanta United VP Carlos Bocanegra and Seattle Sounders GM Garth Lagerwey were both in contention for the USMNT GM role. Bocanegra withdrew his name from contention shortly after it was reported that he was being considered for the role. It was later announced that he is on the committee that is interviewing candidates for the USMNT and USWNT GM positions and will eventually make a hiring recommendation to the USSF Board of Directors.

U.S. Soccer declined through a spokesperson to comment on the GM search on Thursday.