||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (August 2010)|
|Full name||Alan O'Brien|
|Date of birth||20 February 1985|
|Place of birth||Dublin, Ireland|
|Height||1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)|
|2005||→ Carlisle United (loan)||5||(1)|
|2006–2007||Republic of Ireland||5||(0)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 16:27, 11 November 2014 (UTC).
O'Brien played for Cabinteely and St Josephs at youth level in Ireland before signing for Newcastle United. He played in the under–17 national championship winning team who beat Manchester United 5–2 in a final played over two legs at Old Trafford and St James' Park. He then featured regularly for the Newcastle reserve team during the 2003/04 season, but he suffered a broken leg in a training ground accident in July 2004. O'Brien progressed in the next year to the extent that he was in the first team squad, but he was sent on loan to Carlisle United during October 2005. He scored within 10 minutes of his debut for Carlisle, but the loan spell was cut short due to injury.
O'Brien made his Newcastle first team debut on 7 January 2006 in a FA Cup tie against Mansfield Town. Wolves and Norwich City were interested in signing O'Brien, but Glenn Roeder kept O'Brien due to the demands on a small Newcastle squad. O'Brien eventually made his first full Premier League appearance on 20 January 2007 against West Ham United at St James' Park. He played the full 90 minutes against West Ham, but never made another first team start.
On 25 June 2007, O'Brien agreed to sign a three-year contract with Scottish Premier League side Hibernian after the expiry of his contract with Newcastle United, who were entitled to compensation. O'Brien initially struggled to win a place in the Hibernian team, and he turned down a loan move to Football League One side Crewe Alexandra in January 2008. He played more regularly for Hibs during the 2008–09 season, although he missed two months due to a knee injury. He was released by the club on 1 July 2009 after his contract was cancelled by mutual consent.
O'Brien managed four appearances for Swindon before suffering a hamstring injury in August. O'Brien made just one substitute appearance under the management of Paul Hart, who decided to release O'Brien from his contract in April 2011. O'Brien made a total of 40 appearances, the majority as a substitute, in two seasons for Swindon.
O'Brien signed for Gateshead on 9 February 2012. He made his debut on 18 February 2012 in a 2–1 defeat against Forest Green Rovers. O'Brien was released by Gateshead at the end of the season.
O'Brien was capped by Ireland at several youth levels. After impressing during the pre-season of 2006 he received a call up to the senior squad for the first time, where he joined up with then Newcastle teammates Damien Duff, Stephen Carr, and Shay Given. He came on as a second-half substitute for the friendly match against Netherlands to gain his first full international cap.
|Club||Season||League[A]||FA Cup||League Cup||Other[B]||Total|
|Carlisle United (loan)||2005–06||5||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||5||1|
- A. ^ The "League" column constitutes appearances and goals (including those as a substitute) in the Premier League, Football League and Football Conference.
- B. ^ The "Other" column constitutes appearances and goals (including those as a substitute) in the UEFA Intertoto Cup, FA Trophy, Football League Trophy and play-offs.
- Injury blow for O'Brien, BBC Sport, 23 July 2004.
- Queens fail in O'Brien loan bid, BBC Sport, 24 August 2005.
- O'Brien seals Carlisle loan move O'Brien seals Carlisle loan move, BBC Sport, 1 October 2005.
- Carlisle 1–3 Bristol Rovers, BBC Sport, 1 October 2005.
- Buckingham, Mark. Norwich miss out on O'Brien, Sky Sports, 22 September 2006.
- Bailey, Graeme. Wolves warned off Toon starlet, Sky Sports, 4 October 2006.
- Buckingham, Mark. Magpies winger to join Hibs, Sky Sports, 25 June 2007.
- "O'Brien opts to remain with Hibs". BBC Sport. BBC. 30 January 2008. Retrieved 26 February 2012.
- "Winger Alan O'Brien returns to training for Hibs". Daily Record. Trinity Mirror. 28 October 2008. Retrieved 26 February 2012.
- "Swindon swoop for winger O'Brien". BBC Sport. 3 July 2009. Retrieved 14 August 2010.
- Gillingham vs. Swindon
- Swindon midfielder closing on first-team comeback
- "Alan O'Brien leaves struggling Swindon Town". BBC Sport. 22 April 2011. Retrieved 23 April 2011.
- "Yeovil Town complete deal for Alan O'Brien". BBC Sport. BBC. 12 August 2011. Retrieved 12 August 2011.
- "Yeovil Town release four but re-sign Watford's Gavin Massey". BBC Sport. BBC. 4 January 2012. Retrieved 4 January 2012.
- "Gateshead snap up ex-Newcastle United winger Alan O'Brien". BBC Sport. BBC. 9 February 2012. Retrieved 9 February 2012.
- Bowron, Jeff (19 February 2012). "Forest Green Rovers 2–1 Gateshead". Gateshead F.C. Retrieved 19 February 2012.
- Bowron, Jeff (30 April 2012). "Gateshead 2012/13 Squad Update". Gateshead F.C. Retrieved 30 April 2012.
- Parkes, Ian. Staunton keeps watch on Robson for Ireland's Dutch clash, The Independent, 9 August 2006.
- "Alan O'Brien". Soccerbase. Retrieved 9 February 2012.
- "Luton Town 2–0 Gateshead". Gateshead F.C. 26 February 2012. Retrieved 26 February 2012.