Curt Onalfo at a Glance:
- Elevated to Sporting Director ahead of 2024 season after serving as New England’s Technical Director since June 2019.
- Brings extensive MLS front office and coaching experience to the club’s chief sporting position, including head coaching roles with the Kansas City Wizards, D.C. United, and LA Galaxy.
- Spearheaded the overhaul of the Revolution’s pro pathway including the launch of Revolution II and enhancement of the Revolution Academy, which became the first back-to-back MLS NEXT Cup champions in the Under-19 division (2022 and 2023).
- MLS Cup winner as both a player (D.C. United – 1999) and an assistant coach (LA Galaxy – 2011, 2012, and 2014).
- Defeated Hodgkin’s disease at the age of 24 shortly after participating in the 1992 Summer Olympics.
Curt Onalfo is in his first season as Sporting Director of the New England Revolution, overseeing all aspects of the club’s soccer operations including personnel, scouting, player development, and the pro pathway. After serving as Interim Sporting Director for part of 2023, Onalfo was elevated to the post on Nov. 30, 2023. He was previously New England’s Technical Director since June 2019, where he led an overhaul of the Revolution’s pro player pathway inclusive of Revolution II, the Revolution Academy, and the first team.
Since arriving in New England, Onalfo has helped the Revolution first team reach the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs in four of five seasons and win the 2021 Supporters’ Shield with an MLS-record 73 regular season points. His expertise in player development has also resulted in a clearly defined pathway from the team’s youth ranks up to the first team, accelerated by the launch of Revolution II under his direction ahead of its inaugural 2020 season. In its first four seasons, Revolution II provided the first professional minutes to 49 different players, including 29 current and former Revolution Academy players to make their pro debuts with the second team.
Onalfo, 54, has led a renaissance in the Revolution Academy since taking over the program midway through 2019. Under his guidance, the Revolution Academy became the first in MLS NEXT history to win back-to-back MLS NEXT Cup national championships, with the Under-19s winning the postseason tournament in 2022 and 2023. The Revolution Academy also featured the MLS NEXT Under-17 MVP in forward Olger Escobar. The success of New England’s pro pathway under Onalfo is also evident in the influx of youthful Homegrown Players into the first team, including teenagers Noel Buck, Esmir Bajraktarevic, Jack Panayotou, all three of whom have garnered national team recognition. Buck,18, started 20 MLS games in 2023 and earned multiple appearances with the England U-19 Youth National Team, while fellow 18-year-old Bajraktarevic is a fixture on the U.S. Under-23 Olympic Team for Paris 2024 and earned his senior national team cap in January 2024.
A native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, Onalfo possesses New England roots as he was raised in Ridgefield, Conn. He arrived in New England following an extensive coaching and playing career in Major League Soccer and with the United States Men's National Team. He owns 13 years of MLS coaching experience, highlighted by head coaching roles with D.C. United (2010), the Kansas City Wizards (2007-09), and the LA Galaxy (2017). While working as an Assistant Coach with the Galaxy, he also served as the inaugural Head Coach of USL Championship side LA Galaxy II from 2014-16, where he led the club to a Western Conference title in 2015. When he departed “Los Dos” to become Head Coach of the Galaxy’s first team, his overall record with the developmental side finished at 46-29-20.
On the international level, Onalfo spent six years as an Assistant Coach with the United States Men's National Team. He served as an assistant for the USMNT from 2002-07 – including at the 2006 FIFA Men’s World Cup – and also worked as an assistant with the U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team in 2002. Prior to joining the Revolution, he most recently assisted the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team from 2018 through May 2019, including in Poland at the FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup, and briefly served as Acting Head Coach of the U-19 side for a training camp in January 2019.
Onalfo entered the coaching ranks an assistant with D.C. United in 2000 following his retirement. He remained with the Black and Red until September 2002, briefly serving as Interim Head Coach in 2001. After his time in the U.S. Men's National Team setup, Onalfo was appointed Head Coach of the Kansas City Wizards shortly after the 2006 FIFA Men’s World Cup. He led Kansas City for two-and-a-half seasons, compiling a 27-29-22 record, and helped the club reach the postseason twice, including a Western Conference Finals appearance in 2007. In December 2009, Onalfo was named Head Coach of D.C. United.
After starring as a defender at Ridgefield High School in Connecticut, Onalfo played collegiately at the University of Virginia from 1987-1990. In four seasons as a defender with the Cavaliers, he earned a pair of All-ACC First Team selections and helped the team win the 1988 ACC Championship. He began his professional career with French side La Ciotat in 1991, before featuring for the Connecticut Wolves of the USISL from 1994-95, and Mexican club Tampico Madero in 1995.
Onalfo was selected by the LA Galaxy in the 1996 MLS Inaugural Player Draft and would make 13 appearances for the club in the league’s debut season, helping it reach the first ever MLS Cup final. The defender went on to register 23 appearances across four MLS seasons, including stints with San Jose (1997) and D.C. United (1998-99). He recorded one international cap with the U.S. Men's National Team and featured extensively at the youth level, including the 1989 FIFA World Youth Championship, the 1991 Pan American Games, and the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona.
Onalfo’s journey took a detour soon after the 1992 Olympics, when a diagnosis of stage three Hodgkin’s disease at the age of 24 disrupted his career and nearly ended his life. After surviving his arduous battle with cancer, Onalfo resumed his playing career with Connecticut and then Mexican side Tampico FC, before joining the Galaxy for the inaugural MLS season.
Originally born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Onalfo is a fluent Spanish speaker.