Named team manager in 2009 -- before the Union's expansion season in 2010 -- Nowak turned the Union into a northern version of D.C. United -- which he led to an MLS Cup in three years as coach -- signing former players Brian Carroll and Freddy Adu to the squad and Josh Gros and Alecko Eskandarian to his technical staff.
But Nowak's tinkering with his roster was his undoing. After making the playoffs last year, Philadelphia is winless in its last five games (four losses, one tie) and 2-7-2 overall, second worst in MLS.
Coincidentally, Nowak's final competitive match victory for the Union was a 2-1 win over D.C. United in the U.S. Open Cup last week. Philadelphia's first match with promoted John Hackworth at the helm also will be against D.C. United on Saturday night at PPL Park in Chester, Pa.
- Craig Stouffer