Keith Curle: Carlisle United boss keen to stay after play-off heartbreak

Keith Curle
Keith Curle arrived at Carlisle as manager in September 2014

Manager Keith Curle wants to continue the job he has started at Carlisle United beyond his current contract, but wants assurances he will be backed by the club's board going forward.

Curle led the Cumbrians to the League Two play-offs this season, where defeat by Exeter ended their promotion hopes.

He has a year to run on his current deal and will meet with the board to discuss the ongoing plans next week.

"I need to show a level of commitment," Curle, 53, told BBC Radio Cumbria.

"But this is my career, if the football club can't match my ambition then sometimes you've got to say 'Thank you, I've enjoyed my time, but it's time to move on'.

"It's an opportunity for the club to tell me what the plan is, short, medium and long-term - what are the aspirations? If we get an opportunity to get investment towards the football side, I think I will spend it well.

"If the football club says 'We like what you're doing, bought into what you're doing we're going to try to improve certain situations at the club, this is our plan and structure' then, excellent.

"If not, I've got a year on my contract and after June I go into my notice period, which isn't good for me or the club.

"I've got a fantastic relationship with the key stakeholders, the backing they've given me I'm proud of because it shows there's a relationship there we need to maintain and improve."

'There has to be a plan in place'

Jamie Proctor
Jamie Proctor shows his disappointment after Carlisle were dumped out of the play-offs in injury time

Under Curle, Carlisle have gone from battling at the wrong end of League Two to challenging for a return to the third tier for the first time since relegation in 2013-14.

"I don't want to walk away. But I want to be able to compete, there has to be a plan in place," Curle added.

"If there's no plan, eventually it catches up with you and the good work you're trying to do is diluted.

"I need people still to buy into it, we need to steer money towards the first team, towards what Carlisle United is representative of."

Defeat at St James Park was a cruel one for the Cumbrians, as a 95th minute injury-time goal from Jack Stacey took Exeter to Wembley, 6-5 on aggregate.

"The players have represented myself, the football club and the supporters extremely well," Curle said.

"We aim to finish top of the league next season. We won't have the biggest budget - there's a misconception that we are one of the high-fliers in this division.

"Our budget is in comparison to teams between 12-16th in the division, we're competing with teams that have fantastic budgets and location in their favour.

"But the players we have brought in have good character and ability and they give me everything."

Top Stories