Danish international midfielder who played a key part in the League Cup winning side of 1999.
A dynamic midfielder who was signed from Danish club Brondby in 1996 following Euro 1996 in England for £1.65 million. Nielsen brought a tigerish midfield attitude to Gerry Francis' side and he had the ability to break up opposition attacks and launch forward with the ball to switch defence into attack for Spurs.
His early career saw him move around Europe at a young age. Starting in Esbjerg, he moved to his first professional club with a switch to Germany, where Bayern Munich took him on. He made his debut in a league game as a 84th minute substitute, but was not selected again, so move on a three year deal to Sion in Switzerland, but he did not settle and after a couple of months transferred to Odense in his home country.
His part in helping his club win the Danish Cup in 1993 brought him to the attention of FC Copenhagen, who signed him and made him the captain of the club. Spending only one season there, he moved to their main rivals Brondby, where he was voted the club Player of the Season in 1995 and was instrumental in winning the League in 1996.
His international debut came when Richard Moller-Nielsen called him into the Denmark squad and he scored within 45 seconds of coming on as a substitute against Armenia. Was in the Euro 1996 squad but played in only one match, against Turkey and scored once in the game.
Signed by Spurs to add some grit in midfield when Gerry Francis had watched him (seemingly endlessly before actually buying Nielsen) and his energetic performances in the middle of the park went unnoticed a lot of the time. Always willing to chase opponents down and to keep going until the final whistle, Allan gave Tottenham a terrier in midfield they had been missing for a while. His chasing of lost causes often bore fruit and when he charged down a clearance from a Wimbledon defender at the Lane, he was rewarded when he saw the ball ricochet back past the Dons keeper to register one of a good number of goals he scored from midfield.
Made his most important contribution in the winning of the League Cup in the 1999 Wembley final against Leicester City. Reduced to ten men by the erroneous sending off of Justin Edinburgh, Nielsen put everything into his midfield performance and even found the time to pop up in the penalty area to dive full-length to head home Steffen Iversen's shot that was pushed out by Kasey Keller. Nielsen was awarded the Man of the Match trophy for his performance in the winning side.
Nielsen put in a lot of hard work in the Tottenham midfield and perhaps his efforts were not appreciated, as he began to fall out of favour with manager George Graham and was allowed to leave on loan, spending three months at the end of the 1999-2000 season at Wolverhampton Wanderers. It was the beginning of the end for the Danish midfielder and in July, he left to join Watford, signing for £2,250,000.
Spent three years at Vicarage Road, where he was well regarded and played a part in keeping them in the First Division. At the end of his deal, he moved back home to play for Herfolge as a player-assistant coach and halfway through the 2003-04 season, he took over as player-coach, when the manager was sacked. He kept them up that season, but was not able to repeat the feat in 2004-05 when he gave up playing to concentrate on coaching and with the relegation, he resigned and left coaching.
In 2008, he has set up a street football organisation in Denmark to promote playing the game.