Isaac Okoronkwo

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Isaac Okoronkwo
Isaac Okoronkwo 2012.jpg
With FC Rostov in 2012
Personal information
Date of birth (1978-05-01) 1 May 1978 (age 40)
Place of birth Nbene, Nigeria
Height 1.82 m (5 ft 11 12 in)
Playing position Centre back
Youth career
FC Lagos
Julius Berger
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1994 Enyimba 13 (4)
1995 Iwuanyanwu Nationale 26 (7)
1996–1997 Julius Berger 25 (5)
1997–1998 Al-Rayyan ? (?)
1998 Iwuanyanwu Nationale 25 (6)
1998–2000 Sheriff Tiraspol 41 (1)
2000–2003 Shakhtar Donetsk 53 (0)
2003–2004 Wolverhampton Wanderers 7 (0)
2005 Alania Vladikavkaz 22 (0)
2006–2009 Moscow 64 (2)
2010–2013 Rostov 62 (1)
National team
2001–2008 Nigeria 26 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 25 June 2016
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 25 June 2016

Isaac Okoronkwo (born 1 May 1978 in Nbene, Nigeria) is a former professional football player who last played as a defender for FC Rostov in Russia.


Okoronkwo started his career at FC Lagos before moving to the Nigerian club Julius Berger. His first club outside Nigeria was a six-month spell at Al-Rayyan in Qatar, but the club could not afford to keep him beyond this period and he returned home, to Iwuanyanwu Nationale. He spent one season there before again heading abroad with Moldovan club Sheriff Tiraspol for two seasons. In the summer of 2000, he signed for Shakhtar Donetsk in the Ukraine.

With Shakhtar he played in the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Cup, and won the Ukrainian Cup in 2001 and the league title in 2002. After his contract expired in 2003, several Premier League and Bundesliga clubs like Schalke 04 and Borussia Mönchengladbach tried to sign him. He eventually signed a one-year deal with newly promoted Premier League side Wolverhampton Wanderers. Okoronkwo's time in England did not prove a success though as he was unable to break into the team until the closing months of the season, by which time the club faced almost certain relegation. After they suffered the drop, Okoronkwo was released and eventually moved to play in Russia with Alania Vladikavkaz. Alania folded under financial problems in 2005 and he signed with FC Moscow in 2006, soon becoming an important member of the starting line-up at his new club. That season he was voted the club's player of the season, alongside Hector Bracamonte.

International career[edit]

Okoronkwo played 25 games for the Nigeria national team after making his debut on 13 January 2001, against Zambia. He played in the 2002 and 2004 African Cup of Nations (finishing third both times) and in the Olympics Games in 2000. He also played in every minute of Nigeria's 2002 World Cup campaign, where they failed to progress beyond the group stage.

External links[edit]