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Curtin expects Edu to return, Okugo to go

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Interview with mlssoccer.com raises more questions than it answers as Philadelphia Union boss Jim Curtin says the future is still uncertain for Okugo.

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

In an interview with mlssoccer.com's Dave Zeitlin, Philadelphia Union manager Jim Curtin talked about having Maurice Edu - currently on loan from Stoke City - returning to anchor the back line with Carlos Valdes in 2015. Curtin said that he was "cautiously optimistic" that the Union, Edu, and Stoke would come to an agreement. Edu split his time between central defensive midfielder and center back in 2014, playing in 31 of the club's 34 MLS matches and helping lead the club to within inches of the 2014 US Open Cup. This revelation leaves the future of Ethan White up in the air. White played well once released from John Hackworth's doghouse, playing in twelve MLS matches and really shoring up the back line with Edu and Valdes. Also (and perhaps less importantly), this will push Austin Berry and Richie Marquez even further down the depth chart.

The interview also casts a serious doubt on the return of Amobi Okugo to the Union. It's no secret that Okugo's ambitions lie on European soil, however there's been nothing tangible tying him to a club. He did do a training stint with SC Freiburg in 2011 , however there's been no indication they - or anyone else - has had contact with him. While the article confirms the Union are looking to tender an offer to Okugo, Curtin is "pretty confident he’s going to take that option (to go to Europe)." While it's understandable that Okugo wants to test his skills in the bigger pond, it is also a very bad piece of business on the part of the Union to allow Okugo to walk away for free. It will be very interesting to see how this plays out over the coming weeks and months.