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Piotr Nowak (born July 5, 1964 in Pabianicemarker) is a Polishmarker former professional soccer player. He is currently the head coach of Philadelphia Union, which will debut in Major League Soccer in 2010.

Nowak enjoyed a successful playing career in Europe, playing for Polish clubs such as Zawisza Bydgoszcz and Widzew Łódź, before going on to play in Turkey, Switzerland and Germany. He was voted the one of the best players in the Bundesliga for the 1995-96 season while playing with 1860 Munich. He moved to the United States in 1998 and played for years with Chicago Fire.

Nowak was also an important member of the Poland national football team throughout the 1990s, earning 24 caps, serving as national captain for several years, and being voted Polish Player of the Year in 1996.

As a coach, he is a former assistant coach of the United States men's national soccer team under Bob Bradley, and former head coach of United States U-23 men's national soccer team.

Playing career


Nowak began playing professional football at the age of 15, when he debuted in 1979 for Włókniarz Pabianice in his native Poland, with whom he played his first four years. Nowak would go on to play for Zawisza Bydgoszcz, Motor Lublin, and Widzew Łódź before leaving Poland for Bakırköyspor of the Turkishmarker first division in 1990. Nowak then played for Young Boys Berne of Switzerlandmarker and Dynamo Dresden before moving to the Bundesliga in 1994 by signing with FC Kaiserslautern. After that, Nowak moved to 1860 Munich, where he would play until 1998, and with whom he was voted the best playmaker of the Bundesliga for the 1995-96 season, as well as Polish player of the year in 1996.

In 1998, Nowak moved to the United Statesmarker to play in Major League Soccer for the Chicago Fire. In their inaugural season, Nowak led the Fire to a victory in the MLS Cup, and was soon recognized as one of the best players in the league. He also led the Fire to two US Open Cup victories, playing 114 league games for the team, registering 26 goals and 48 assists. Nowak played with the Fire until 2002, when, due to salary cap constraints, he was traded to the New England Revolution, which immediately spurred his retirement.


Nowak was also an important player for the Polish national team, which he captained for three years, and for whom he played 24 games and scored three goals.

Coaching career

After a year off, Nowak was appointed as head coach of D.C. United starting in the 2004 season. He quickly pulled the team together and led D.C. to their fourth MLS Cup.

On December 20, 2006, the Washington Post reported that Nowak would be leaving United to act as assistant to Bob Bradley with the United States Men's national team, and the Under-23 Men's national team, which competed at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

On May 28, 2009, Nowak resigned from his position with the United States Men's National Team. Subsequently, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported that Nowak would be the first head coach of the MLS' Philadelphia Union when it begins play in 2010.

On Friday, May 29, 2009 Nowak was introduced to the media as the first Team Manager of the Philadelphia Union.


In 2003, Nowak was named the first member of the Ring of Fire, the highest honor the Chicago Fire bestows, and his name and number 10 are displayed high at midfield at their stadium, Toyota Parkmarker. In 2005, Nowak was named to the MLS All-Time Best XI.

For his contribution to promotion of Polandmarker abroad and achievements as a coach, he received the Knight's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland in 2005.



Team Nat From To Record
G W L D Win %
D.C. United 2004 2006 94 42 27 25
United States U-23 2007 2009
Philadelphia Union 2010 Present
Total 94 42 27 25
Updated on 29 May 2009.

See also


  1. Nowak to Leave D.C. for U.S. Team -
  2. Nowak Resigns from Men's National Team Staff
  3. Nowak hired as first head coach of Philadelphia Union - The Philadelphia Inquirer

External links

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