“News” on Caleb Porter’s contract status

5 Comments

For U.S. soccer supporters awaiting a reckoning on U.S. under-23 manager Caleb Porter, standing by for a dismissal from the position or for some official thumbs-up, here’s some useful news:

Nothing like that was ever going to happen.

Porter’s position as U.S. under-23 coach was never a “permanent” post, per se. There isn’t a permanent under-23 program, so his was always a cyclical position for a team created once every four years, attached to the quadrennial summer Olympic games.

Porter’s contract expires on April 30, according to U.S. Soccer. That expiration date was always in the contract in the event the United States failed to qualify for London 2012.

Had the United States earned a berth for this summer, regardless of whether things went “famine” or “feast” in London, his contract would have expired shortly thereafter, most likely at the end of August.That’s standard in these contracts. (Peter Nowak’s deal was structured slightly differently four years ago because he was a full-time assistant on Bob Bradley’s national team staff at the time, “moonlighting” as Olympic coach.)

U.S. Soccer spokesman Neil Buethe said Porter will meet soon with U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati, U.S. Soccer secretary general Dan Flynn and national team manager Jurgen Klinsmann in a standard performance review. Porter, who remains coach of the University of Akron’s highly successful program, could still fill any number of roles within U.S. Soccer’s integrated national team system (under-17s, under-20s, full men’s team assistant, etc.). Or all parties could simply move on.

“I would think that meeting will happen sooner rather than later,” Buethe told me a few minutes ago from his U.S. Soccer office in Chicago. “They obviously want to review things face to face, so it’s just a matter of figuring out everybody’s schedule.”