Carl Onora Ikeme (born 8 June 1986) is a professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Championship club Wolverhampton Wanderers and the Nigeria national team. He has previously played, on loan, at Accrington Stanley, Stockport County, Charlton Athletic, Sheffield United, Queens Park Rangers, Leicester City, Middlesbrough, and Doncaster Rovers.
Ikeme playing for Wolverhampton Wanderers in 2014
|Full name||Carl Onora Ikeme|
|Date of birth||8 June 1986|
|Place of birth||Sutton Coldfield, England|
|Height||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|2004||→ Accrington Stanley (loan)||3||(0)|
|2005–2006||→ Stockport County (loan)||9||(0)|
|2009||→ Charlton Athletic (loan)||4||(0)|
|2009||→ Sheffield United (loan)||2||(0)|
|2010||→ Queens Park Rangers (loan)||17||(0)|
|2010||→ Leicester City (loan)||5||(0)|
|2011||→ Middlesbrough (loan)||10||(0)|
|2011||→ Doncaster Rovers (loan)||5||(0)|
|2012||→ Doncaster Rovers (loan)||10||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 12:34, 18 February 2017 (UTC).
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 02:51, 5 February 2017 (UTC)
Ikeme progressed through Wolverhampton Wanderers' academy and made the first team squad in their 2003–04 Premier League season. Due to Matt Murray's long term injury, he was promoted to the substitutes' bench for a string of games but never played.
First loan movesEdit
To gain first team action, he moved on loan to League Two side Accrington Stanley. He made senior debut on 16 October 2004 when he played the first of four games for them, keeping a clean sheet at Aldershot Town. He also had a further loan move to Stockport County in Autumn 2005 which was cut short due to a hand injury.
He finally made his Wolves debut the following season, in a 5–1 win over Chester City in the League Cup on 23 August 2005. However, although often on the bench, he had to wait until 26 August 2006 for his first league appearance for the club when he appeared as a late substitute in a 1–0 win over Luton Town.
Ikeme suffered a knee injury during the 2006–07 season and had to undergo surgery, which kept him out of contention until late 2007. After recovering, he was an unused substitute or only employed in reserve team fixtures. It was not until September 2008 that he got his chance to return to Wolves' first team after regular keeper Wayne Hennessey was suspended. Impressing, he enjoyed his longest run of games in a Wolves shirt until injury ruled him out for the remainder of the season, during which the club went on to claim the Championship and reach the Premier League.
Championship loan spellsEdit
After regaining fitness, he joined League One side Charlton Athletic on a month's loan in October 2009 to cover for injured Robert Elliot, making five appearances. Upon the end of this loan he immediately went out on loan again, this time to Championship side Sheffield United for a month but a hamstring injury halted his stay. He recovered from this setback and was again sent out on loan to a Championship club, this time Queens Park Rangers during January 2010, where he made 17 appearances.
In August 2010, he again went out on loan when he joined Leicester City on a one-month emergency deal as cover for injured keeper Chris Weale. This spell was later extended but ended when the Foxes recruited Chris Kirkland at the end of November, after four appearances by Ikeme. He spent the remainder of the 2010–11 season back at Wolves.
Ikeme completed a one-month loan move to Championship side Middlesbrough in August 2011, after impressing in a pre-season trial. This loan deal was extended for a further month in August, and then for a third and final month until 1 November. He kept six clean sheets in ten games before a hand injury saw him return to Molineux.
Once recovered, he had a loan spell at another Championship side when he joined Doncaster Rovers in November 2011. He made five appearances for the club as they struggled at the foot of the table before the deal expired in January. He returned to them once again in March 2012, joining on an initial one-month loan deal, later extended to run until the end of the season. However, he was recalled by Wolves following an injury to first choice goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey; by this point, Doncaster had been confirmed as relegated to League One under his future Wolves manager Dean Saunders.
Return to WolvesEdit
Ikeme made his first appearance for Wolves since January 2009 on the final day of 2011–12, coming on as a substitute for Dorus de Vries in the fifty-first minute of a 3–2 loss to Wigan Athletic at the DW Stadium on 13 May 2012. This was Terry Connor's last game in charge of Wolves before being replaced by Ståle Solbakken, who gave Ikeme his most consistent run in the first-team so far.
Ikeme started the 2012–13 season as Wolves' first choice goalkeeper in the Championship following injuries to Wayne Hennessey and Dorus de Vries; he maintained his place in the first team when the latter returned in September 2012. In March 2013 he conceded a bizarre own goal during a league game against Bristol City, when he allowed a David Davis backpass to go between his legs and roll over the line. Ikeme was substituted at half time, and it was later confirmed that he had broken his hand during the interval by punching a tactics board in the dressing room in frustration at the incident. This injury kept him out for the remainder of the season, which ended in relegation to League One.
Ikeme retained the goalkeeping position at Wolves for the 2013–14 season, excelling in a 3–0 win over Colchester United at the Colchester Community Stadium on 5 October 2013 when he saved a late penalty from Freddie Sears. However, he again suffered a broken hand when he was injured in a collision against Tranmere on 1 January 2014. He returned to Wolves' goal now as the established first choice, following the sale of Wayne Hennessey, and was a part of the team that won the League One title with a record points tally. After keeping 22 clean sheets across the season Ikeme was named in the PFA League One Team of the Year alongside four other teammates.
Once back in the Championship, Ikeme impressed at the start of 2014–15, keeping five clean sheets in the first eight games, during which he saved an Owen Garvan penalty in a 1–0 win over Bolton Wanderers on 20 September 2014 at Molineux.
During the 2016–17 season, Ikeme extended his current deal, ensuring he is contracted to Wolves until summer 2020. The goalkeeper received his first career red card on 21 January 2017 in a league match at Norwich City; when Wolves appealed against it, the suspension was reduced from three matches to two.
Ikeme was born in Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, and was eligible to represent England or Nigeria at international level. He chose Nigeria, and was first called up to the Super Eagles squad in 2007. He made his international debut for Nigeria on 5 September 2015 against Tanzania in a 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualification game.
- As of 8 July 2017
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Other||Total|
|Sheff Utd (loan)||2009–10||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||2||0|
- "The Mons take on the Wolves". The Northern Standard. 8 July 2011. Retrieved 12 January 2013.
- Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2010). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2010–11. Mainstream Publishing. p. 212. ISBN 978-1-84596-601-0.
- "Carl Ikeme". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman.
- "Accrington snap up keeper Ikeme". BBC Sport. 14 October 2004.
- "Keeper Howarth loaned to Hatters". BBC Sport. 12 January 2006.
- "Wolves 5–1 Chester". BBC Sport. 23 August 2005.
- "Wolves 1–0 Luton". BBC Sport. 26 August 2006.
- "McCarthy tipping Ikeme to shine". BBC Sport. 26 September 2008.
- "Charlton sign Wolves keeper Ikeme". BBC Sport. 28 October 2009.
- "Sheff Utd sign Ikeme and Kallio". BBC Sport. 26 November 2009.
- "Queens Park Rangers sign Wolves keeper Carl Ikeme". BBC Sport. 6 January 2010.
- "Wolves loan keeper Carl Ikeme to Leicester City". BBC Sport. 26 August 2010.
- "Keeper completes Boro loan". Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. 2 August 2011. Archived from the original on 8 August 2011.
- "Ikeme Loan Extended". Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. 26 August 2011. Archived from the original on 13 September 2012.
- "Wolves keeper Carl Ikeme extends Middlesbrough loan". BBC Sport. 27 September 2011. Retrieved 4 October 2011.
- "Doncaster Rovers sign Carl Ikeme on loan from Wolves". BBC Sport. 10 November 2011.
- "Doncaster Rovers re-sign Wolves goalkeeper Carl Ikeme". BBC Sport. 1 March 2012.
- "Duo depart Rovers on loan". Yahoo. 22 March 2012.
- "Wigan 3–2 Wolves". BBC Sport. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
- "Own-goal calamity at Wolves as keeper nutmegged by his defender". Daily Mail. 17 March 2013.
- "Angry keeper breaks own hand". 3 News NZ. 20 March 2003.
- "Boss confirms Ikeme break". Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. 19 March 2013.
- "Colchester 0–3 Wolves". BBC Sport. Retrieved 5 October 2013.
- "Carl Ikeme: Wolves keeper out for six weeks with broken hand". BBC Sport. 2 January 2014.
- "Sky Bet League 1 Team of the Season 2013/14". Retrieved 23 May 2014.
- "Wolves 1–0 Bolton". BBC Sport. Retrieved 20 September 2014.
- "Carl Ikeme signs new Wolves contract". Express & Star. 29 December 2016. Retrieved 21 January 2017.
- "Carl Ikeme: Wolves to appeal against goalkeeper's red card at Norwich". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 23 January 2017. Retrieved 23 January 2017.
- "Carl Ikeme Appeal". Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. 24 January 2017. Retrieved 12 February 2017.
- "Vogts' first squad causes a stir". BBC Sport. 7 March 2007.
- 🇳🇬 Super Eagles [@NGSuperEagles] (5 September 2015). "LINE UP VS TANZANIA. Your take? USE #TANVNGA #TanzaniaMustFall Subs: Ezenwa, Rabiu,Eduok,Ujah, Akas, Igboun, Godfrey" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- "Club Statement: Carl Ikeme". 6 July 2017. Retrieved 6 July 2017.
- "Carl Ikeme profile". Soccerbase. Retrieved 21 January 2017.
- "Wolverhampton Wanderers 1-0 Doncaster Rovers". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
- "Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-0 Carlise United". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
- "Sky Bet League 1 Team of the Season 2013/14". EFL Website. Retrieved 2 May 2017.