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Burn Signs Irish Midfielder Ronnie O'Brien

July 12, 2002 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - FC Dallas News Release

DALLAS - The Dallas Burn announced today that the team has signed midfielder Ronnie O'Brien as a Discovery Player. To make room on the roster for O'Brien, the Burn waived forward Hamisi Amani-Dove. The Burn was able to acquire O'Brien by obtaining Chicago's discovery option as the "future considerations" element of a 2002 draft day trade which gave Chicago one of the Burn's second round picks (17th overall). O'Brien, 23, began his professional career at the age of 18 when he signed with Middlesborough in the English leagues. He spent two years with Middlesborough before signing a five-year contract with Juventus of the Italian Serie A.

During his time with Juventus, O'Brien played on loan with Lugano in Switzerland, Crotone and Lecco in Italy and has spent the last two years with Dundee United in Scotland playing in 13 games and scoring one goal. O'Brien, who will count as a Transitional International for the Burn, has played with the Irish U-18, U-19 and U-21 National Teams, winning the European Championship with the U-18 side.

"We're extremely happy to be able to add a player of Ronnie's caliber," said Burn Head Coach Mike Jeffries. "He's a highly gifted passer and a mobile player who sees the game very well. He's also a very good ball-winner that keeps the play going with his vision."

"I'm very excited to be joining the Burn and Major League Soccer," said O'Brien, who will wear #26 for the Burn. "This is a very up and coming league and the standard of play is extremely high. I'm happy to be here and to help the team in any way that I can."

Amani-Dove was acquired by the Burn on August 24, 2001 through MLS lottery. He appeared in a total of eight games for the Burn, registering one assist.

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