FAI extends its sympathies to family of Anne O'Brien RIP
Dublin-born O'Brien, 60, passed away in Rome today after a short battle with illness. She will forever be remembered as one of the country's greatest ever female footballers.
A talented midfielder, she played for a Dublin club called All Stars before joining Reims in France in 1973 and for Trani, Lazio, Reggiana and AC Milan in Italy in a lengthy playing career that stretched from the 1960s to the 1990s. She also played for Modena, Napoli and Prato.
O'Brien won six Serie A titles and two Coppa Italia winner’s medals. She later turned her hand to coaching including spells with Civitavecchia, Lazio and the Italian national U17 team. Italian women's football legend Carolina Morace paid tribute to Anne as one of the greatest players ever to play in Italy.
Her international career was limited to the four caps over an 18-year spell as it coincided with a time when the Women's Football Association of Ireland was a separate organisation to the FAI and had restricted resources.
"Anne O'Brien was a real legend in women's football and her death today is a terrible loss to her family and friends," said FAI CEO John Delaney.
"Her loss will also be felt amongst those pioneers of the women's game in Ireland who were inspired by her achievements to keep promoting women's football. She achieved so much and blazed a trail for those Irish female internationals now forging careers in football.
"We will pay tribute to Anne's memory at the Georgia international in October."
The FAI extends its sympathies to Anne's son Andrea, siblings Paul, Robert, John, Tony, Rosaleen, Collette and Pat plus family and friends. She was predeceased by Fran and Marie.