“I really enjoyed my time playing football at school and I must say that Brother Colm, of Coláiste Chríost Rí, had a huge influence on my career,” O’Brien says.
Meath wouldn’t have won any popularity contests with the Cork supporters, but O’Brien says that the style of that Meath team was based more on aggressive play than dirty tactics and opponents had to be ready to adapt.
“I knew for weeks that, win or lose, my body could not go on playing at this level for much longer and I was determined to go out in glory,” O’Brien says.
“We are not a big club, but we are very united, who work well together with little fuss,” O’Brien says.
A genuine man, whose determined style of play won him many admirers, he was always proud to serve his club and county with pride. In more recent years he enjoyed success on the sideline with Nemo's seniors as well.
O’Brien is the holder of two senior football medals, as well as winning an All-Ireland U21 medal, All-Ireland senior, national football league, and All-Ireland club titles, all in the one year, 1989.
He won a Munster Colleges title and an All-Ireland Colleges, with Coláiste Chríost Rí, in 1985.
O’Brien retired from football in 2003, after helping Nemo win the All-Ireland club title, when defeating Crossmolina, of Mayo, in the final.
He played football with his club for 28 years. In recent years he was involved as a selector and manager, collecting more titles.