Hartford Athletic signed Pearse O’Brien to a USL Academy contract ahead of the 2022 season, pending league and federation approval, which allows the 17-year-old West Hartford, Conn., native to train and play for Hartford in USL Championship and U.S. Open Cup, while retaining his NCAA eligibility.
The attacking midfielder spent the 2021 season at the academy of Major League Soccer’s Real Salt Lake. O’Brien made two appearances with former USL Championship club Real Monarchs.
O’Brien is a product of Connecticut’s Oakwood Soccer Club based in Glastonbury. As a 16-year-old, he earned a place on Oakwood’s Under-19 side, and as its youngest player, he became a top-ranked prospect.