Hartford Athletic, a new professional soccer franchise, has chosen a head coach.
Jimmy Nielsen, who coached the USL expansion club Oklahoma City Energy FC from 2014 to 2017, has been selected as the first head coach for the Connecticut team and he joins the team immediately.
While Nielsen, the 2012 Goalkeeper of the Year, was with the Oklahoma City team, it made the playoffs three out of four seasons.
Before coaching, Nielsen competed for 19 years as a professional player in Denmark, England and with the Major League Soccer franchise Sporting Kansas City.
“I am honored and excited to be named the first head coach of Hartford Athletic,” Nielsen said in a statement. “We are here to win titles and make our community proud. Our promise to our fans is to leave everything out there on the field, every match. We have a lot to do to prepare for 2019, and I cannot wait to lead our Club onto the field for our first match.”
Hartford Athletic, which is part of the United Soccer League, is preparing for its opening season in 2019 and will play its home games at Dillon Stadium in Hartford.