IRVINE, Calif. – Orange County SC announced on Wednesday it had signed Danish center back Thomas Juel-Nielsen, pending receipt of his P-1 visa and league and federation approval. Juel-Nielsen joins Orange County having made more than 190 appearances at the highest level in Denmark, Norway and Sweden previously in his career.
Juel-Nielsen made his professional debut in 2009 for Hvidovre IF, which preceded joining AB of the Danish Superliga the following year. Across three seasons, Juel-Nielsen made 64 appearances and scored five goals for the club.
The 27-year-old joined Sandefjord Fotball of the Norwegian Eliteserien league in 2015, where he made 20 appearances. He then went on to play in the highest level in Sweden with Falkenbergs FF in 2016, scoring four goals, before last year moving to Aarhus GF where he played a key role in helping the club make the Superliga playoffs.
“Thomas is another example of the quality player that we have worked hard to profile to represent our club. He has played at a high level in Europe and will bring an immense amount of experience & intelligence to our back line,” said Orange County Head Coach Braeden Cloutier. “He is a very athletic defender with the speed and pace to deal with the type of forwards we face in the USL and also the ability to dominate in the air. More importantly Thomas is a fantastic professional that will provide a great example to our younger players with his attitude, commitment and discipline.”
Juel-Nielsen is the second Danish player to join Orange County in the past week, with forward Thomas Enevoldsen – who earned 11 appearances for his country – having arrived at the club after having most recently played for NAC Breda of the Dutch Eredivisie.