The former Newcastle United winger looked set to join the Railwaymen on loan until the end of the season until the player and his agent decided to stay at Tynecastle.
22-year-old O'Brien would have made a big difference as the club look for a more balanced team with width as the club have struggled to create chances.
Holland told the official webisite "We thought we had signed Alan O'Brien, a player that was once at Newcastle. I spend five hours last night trying to set it up. I spoke to their chairman with the International clearance regulations and what we needed to do there.
"We finally got there and he was expected to sign tomorrow, only to discover from his agent that the club wanted to keep him. I have later found out that the boy was reluctant to come. It is a another frustration in the transfer market.
"I must say, the more agents get involved the more complicated it becomes. It is much better dealing with the clubs and then the player. Agents are just waste your time."