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Ikeme: Playing For Super Eagles Is Special

Ikeme: Playing For Super Eagles Is Special 

Wolves goalkeeper Carl Ikeme is enjoying playing for the Super Eagles as they seek to qualify for both the World Cup and the Africa Cup of Nations.

Ikeme is now Nigeria's first choice goalkeeper following the retirement of Vincent Enyeama and the 29-year-old already has four Nigeria caps.


“It’s all moved really quickly," Ikeme told Express And Star. "The first time I went, I didn’t know if I was going to play or not.

"As the week developed it seemed like Vincent  wouldn’t be able to make it. My debut went really well.

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"The result didn’t go our way but on a personal level it went well, a good start takes the pressure off you.”

In spite of already being a household name in Nigeria, Ikeme insists he is not a star.

He added: “I’m not sure about being a star, I’m just trying to concentrate on each call-up to the squad at the minute. I don’t want to get too far ahead of myself.

“The fans are fanatical, it’s a big footballing nation, it’s their number one sport, everyone’s passionate about football.

“It’s very special, especially when you’re winning, the delight of everybody and the backing of everybody is a great feeling.

“When I’ve been there we weren’t out of the hotel that much, but after the game it’s a bit hectic trying to get to the car, it’s crazy.

“My family are ecstatic. That means a lot to me to make them happy. My aunties in Nigeria, my cousins, they’re delighted so, hopefully, I can continue to play and we can do well as a nation.

“My dad came over for my debut and I was in contact with my family throughout.”

Fellow England-based players John Obi Mikel (Chelsea), Odion Ighalo (Watford) and Alex Iwobi (Arsenal) have joined Ikeme in the squad.

Are they helping him to settle him in? Ikeme answered: “Well, Alex is a youngster so it’s me helping him settle in!

“Sunday Oliseh is a legend in Nigeria. He’s made me feel welcome and that I can play at that level. I grew up watching him so I’ve got massive respect for him.

“I’m enjoying it and, hopefully, I can continue to do well.”

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