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Monsour steps down as City United FC’s coach; Sets sights on acquisition of European club

Photo credit Shelia Thompson

Michael Anton Monsour’s ambitious path into the soccer world has taken a new turn.

The owner and head coach of Pittsburgh City United FC has informed players that he will step down from his role as Head Coach for the club after this Saturday’s UPSL home match against Fut Ohio SC. 6:30 pm kickoff at JC Stone Field.

While Monsour will remain as the club’s owner, he now sets his sights on the acquisition of a yet-to-be-named First Division European Club.

“Last season through unfortunate circumstances that we could not control in regards to getting Coach (Barry) Smith (from UK) over to the US, I was afforded the opportunity through the trust of Coach Smith to lead this team in a position I had never dreamed of being in,” Monsour told Pittsburgh Soccer Now earlier this week.

“As things have continued to progress in regards to the acquisition of a first division club in Europe, which would offer an opportunity for some of our elite players at City United to bring their talents to the highest level of European Cup competition, I have informed the team that I will be stepping down as Head Coach after this Saturday’s match. In my place, I have named our current Director of Football, Dante Nicholas as acting Manager moving forward and I am confident that he will provide the necessary leadership and guidance for our players moving forward. The beautiful game has given me more than I could have ever asked for and these players have honored me with their commitment to this organization on and off the pitch.”

PCUFC’s owner said that he’s unable to reveal the club he is in talks with, as they’re  “still awaiting consent from the Federation. which can take a couple of weeks.”

Monsour stepped in as interim manager last season, due to a travel ban which eventually would block the arrival of incoming manager and Scottish football legend Barry Smith.

Monsour would go on to lead City United to a second-place finish in the Beltway North division and a place in the Semifinals of the Beltway North Playoffs, eventually losing to Sure Sports FC in extra time.

“Michael has done a tremendous job as Head Coach at Pittsburgh City United FC, leading them to the playoffs in the club’s inaugural season and also his first season as a Head coach,” Barry Smith said via the Pittsburgh City United FC team release.  “His stepping down is leaving the club in a good place for someone else to continue the good work that he has started. ”

This season, City United with Monsour at the helm started off strong with a 10-1 victory against the Youngstown Nighthawks before losing 3-1 a few days later against Pittsburgh SC in a match that saw 4 City United players exit with injuries.

Overall, Monsour has compiled a record of 8 wins, 3 draws, and 4 losses with his team scoring 50 goals and surrendering just 17 goals in 15 matches.

Monsour will remain City United’s owner to ensure the club’s focus on supporting the Alzheimer’s Association and spreading Awareness for concussion safety continues on.

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

Riverhounds MF Danny Griffin

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