Bernie Ibini-Isei

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Bernie Ibini-Isei
Bernie Ibini-Isei.jpg
Ibini playing for Central Coast Mariners Youth in 2010
Personal information
Full name Bernie Alpha Ibini-Isei
Date of birth (1992-09-12) 12 September 1992 (age 24)
Place of birth Port Harcourt, Nigeria
Height 1.87 m (6 ft 1 12 in)[1]
Playing position Winger, Forward
Club information
Current team
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Number 23
Youth career
Blacktown City
2009–2011 Central Coast Mariners
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2010–2013 Central Coast Mariners 61 (15)
2010–2011 Blacktown City (loan) 12 (1)
2013–2015 Shanghai Dongya 10 (0)
2013–2014 Central Coast Mariners (loan) 16 (6)
2014–2015 Sydney FC (loan) 28 (7)
2015–2017 Club Brugge 0 (0)
2016–2017 Sydney FC (loan) 20 (3)
2017– Vancouver Whitecaps FC 0 (0)
National team
2011 Australia U-20 6 (1)
2011 Australia U-23 1 (0)
2014– Australia 2 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 7 May 2017.
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 15 October 2014

Bernie Alpha Ibini-Isei (born 12 September 1992), also known simply as Bernie Ibini, is an Australian professional footballer who currently plays for Major League Soccer club Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

Early life[edit]

Bernie Ibini-Isei immigrated to Australia from Nigeria when he was a child, and grew up in Sydney's Canterbury-Bankstown region. His passion for football was obvious from a very young age, and at the age of 6 years old he was registered to play for his local club Earlwood Wanderers.

He has a sister, Princess Ibini-Isei, who is also a footballer, playing for Sydney FC in the W-League and the Australian U-20 team.[citation needed]

Playing career[edit]

Ibini started playing football for New South Wales Premier League club Blacktown City at youth level. He was immediately recognized as a player with immense potential and was selected to join Westfields Sports High School.[citation needed]

Central Coast Mariners[edit]

In 2009, he was signed by the Central Coast Mariners to join their youth team in the A League competition. In 2009, he received the Golden Boot Award in the National Youth League and was quickly promoted to the senior team, where he made his debut on 12 February 2010, in their round 27 clash against Wellington Phoenix at Westpac Stadium in Wellington.[2] Ibini-Isei made his starting debut for the Mariners against the Gold Coast and scored in a 3–1 win. After just his third start for the Central Coast Mariners Ibini-Isei scored the second goal for the Central Coast Mariners against Perth Glory. His speed and skill quickly gained the attention of the Australian under 20 National Team coach to play a key role in the U20 World Cup.

His consistent development and performances earned Bernie a two-year contract extension with the club, and on 1 February 2012 it was announced that he had signed a two-year contract extension with Central Coast Mariners.[3]

Shanghai East Asia[edit]

On 4 June 2013, after his superb performances in the 2012/2013 Asian Champions League round of 16 clash against Guangzhou Evergrande, Central Coast Mariners received a record bid for Ibini from Shanghai East Asia FC who were keen to add to their squad list for the Chinese Super League. Three days later his move to newly promoted Chinese Super League side Shanghai East Asia, was complete with Ibini signing a three-year contract.[4] This move made Ibini one of the most expensive under 21 players 21 in Asia. Bernie made an immediate impact in the Chinese Super League with his speed and skill playing as a wide striker. However, in November 2013, due to the unexpected tragic death of his father Ibini gained permission to return to the Australian A League, and previous club Central Coast Mariners on loan on compassionate grounds. The loan move took effect on 8 January 2014 and was until 31 May 2014 after which he was then to return to Shanghai.

Loan to Sydney FC[edit]

In May 2014 Ibini signed for Sydney FC on loan,[5] making his debut in round 1 of the A League season against Melbourne City. Ibini scored his first goal in the Sydney Derby in a 1–1 draw. In the last 3 rounds of the A league season Ibini scored 3 goals a contender for goal of the season against Perth Glory, a lovely lob over the goalkeeper against Newcastle United and an amazing solo goal against Wellington Phoenix. Although Sydney wanted to keep Ibini, he was recalled by Shanghai on 3 June 2015[6] Ibini played in every single A-League fixture for Sydney during the 2014–15 season.

Club Brugge[edit]

Following his release from Sydney, due to his contract ending on 1 May, Ibini missed out on playing against 2014-15 Premier League champions Chelsea in a friendly at ANZ Stadium. It was shortly announced thereafter that Ibini had gained permission from Shanghai East Asia to travel to Belgium for a medical with Club Brugge with Shanghai unlikely to retain him due to their foreign player quota already filled.[7] He signed a 3-year deal with the club on 5 June 2015.[8] It was announced that Ibini would wear the number 11 shirt.

Second loan to Sydney FC[edit]

After being ruled out for the 2015–16 Belgian Pro League season due to a broken leg he suffered in his first training session with Club Brugge, it was announced on 21 July 2016 that Ibini would return to Sydney FC on a loan deal once again.[9] He made his return from injury in an FFA Cup semi-final against Canberra Olympic on 19 October 2016, coming on as a second-half substitute and scoring a late goal in a 3–0 win.[10]

Vancouver Whitecaps FC[edit]

On 9 May 2017, Ibini signed with Major League Soccer club Vancouver Whitecaps FC on a one-year deal with an option to make it a two-year deal.[11]


Ibini made his debut for the Australian U-20 team in 2011, coming on as a second-half substitute in a 1–0 win against Germany U-20.

On 7 March 2011 he was selected to represent the Australia Olympic football team in an Asian Olympic Qualifier match against Iraq.[12]

On 10 October 2014 he made his debut for the Australian senior team, starting in a friendly match against the United Arab Emirates in preparation for the 2015 AFC Asian Cup.[13]

Career statistics[edit]

As of 7 May 2017 [citation needed]
Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League Cup Continental Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Central Coast Mariners 2009–10 A-League 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
2010–11 4 1 0 0 0 0 4 1
2011–12 29 7 0 0 6 0 35 7
2012–13 27 7 0 0 8 0 35 7
Club total 61 15 0 0 14 0 75 15
Blacktown City (loan) 2010 NSW Premier League 12 1 2 0 0 0 14 1
Shanghai Dongya 2013 Chinese Super League 10 0 1 0 0 0 11 0
Central Coast Mariners (loan) 2013–14 A-League 16 6 0 0 5 0 21 6
Sydney FC (loan) 2014–15 28 7 2 0 0 0 30 7
Club Brugge 2015–16 Belgian Pro League 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Sydney FC (loan) 2016–17 A-League 20 3 1 1 0 0 21 4
Career total 147 32 6 1 19 0 172 33



Central Coast Mariners:

Sydney FC

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Bernie Ibini-Isei - Sydney FC Team". 
  2. ^ "Hyundai A-League Home". Archived from the original on 16 July 2012. 
  3. ^ "Bernie Ibini Signs On For Two More Years". FourFourTwo. Retrieved 9 May 2017. 
  4. ^ 东亚官方宣布2次转会第1签 3年合同锁澳大利亚锋将(Chinese)
  5. ^ "Ibini signs for Sydney FC". SBS. 12 May 2014. Retrieved 3 June 2015. 
  6. ^ Hassett, Sebastian (3 June 2015). "All change at Sydney FC as Graham Arnold dumps key players and lose Bernie Ibini". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 3 June 2015. 
  7. ^ Lewis, David (3 June 2015). "Ibini signs for Sydney FC". SBS. Retrieved 3 June 2015. 
  8. ^ "Bernie Ibini 3 years at Club Brugge". Club Brugge. 5 June 2015. Retrieved 5 June 2015. 
  9. ^ "Star Forward Returns To Sydney FC". Sydney FC. 21 July 2016. 
  10. ^ Puterflam, Michael (20 October 2016). "Bernie Ibini's return: 'Arnie would probably lose it at me if I didn't get to the back post'". Fox Sports. Retrieved 21 October 2016. 
  11. ^ "Whitecaps FC acquire winger/forward Bernie Ibini from Belgian club Brugge KV". Vancouver Whitecaps FC. 9 May 2017. Retrieved 9 May 2017. 
  12. ^ "Vidmar names U23s squad to face Iraq". Retrieved 9 May 2017. 
  13. ^ Greco, John (10 October 2014). "Socceroos left frustrated in Abu Dhabi". Football Federation Australia. 

External links[edit]