KEITH Curle is set to be confirmed as Oldham Athletic manager this week, the Oldham Times understands.

The 57-year-old has been the man that owner Abdallah Lemsagam and his brother Mo, the club's sporting director, wanted to take the club forward after impressing the pair on a short-term deal towards the end of last season.

Curle, who took charge after the sacking of Harry Kewell following just eight months at the Boundary Park helm, outlined his vision for the team and the squad, and from the outset set about tightening up the leakiest defence in the division.

With Latics struggling in the bottom half of the basement division, the former Carlisle and Northampton boss had been given a remit of guaranteeing League football for another season, while ending the campaign with a positive goal difference was among his personal targets.

The latter failed to materialise in the end as the season ended disappointingly, with a run of three defeats on the spin recorded straight after mathematical safety was achieved with a comfortable win at Harrogate Town.

But after weeks of negotiations to strike the right deal for both Curle and the club they appear to have now reached a long-awaited conclusion. Curle will be given the chance to build and put more of his own stamp on the team, with the opportunity to have a full pre-season with the squad and bring in his own signings key to that.

Both parties had hoped to finalise a deal before the end of last season, but a planned face-to-face meeting between Curle and the Lemsagams was complicated by restrictions on international travel.

It is understood they found a way around this in order to have in-depth discussions and thrash out the finer details of the deal, with Curle set to put pen to paper in the coming days having reached an agreement.

Curle had wanted assurances over his budget and the amount of control he would have over team affairs, with sporting director Mo having had a significant influence over previous managers and also recruitment.

Before the season ended with the visit of Forest Green Rovers, Curle said: “The important thing is, it’s not about when you make the decision, it’s people making the right decision.

“I think that’s vitally important and for the best interests of everybody. It has to be the right decision for all parties – for Oldham Football Club, for the owners and also for myself.

“It’s not just a case of ‘do you want to stay, we’ll pay you this much’, there’s a hell of a lot more that goes into.

“It’s getting the direction the football club wants to go in and needs to go in and putting in place things that you’re going to need on that journey.

“Everybody has to be aligned and it has to be the right decision for everybody, and within that it has to be as clear and as decisive as you can make it, and that helps an upward curve, when everybody’s got an accountability for what they’re responsible for and not shying away from it."