Mustapha Carayol

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Mustapha Carayol
Personal information
Full name Mustapha Soon Carayol[1]
Date of birth (1988-09-04) 4 September 1988 (age 28)[2]
Place of birth Banjul, Gambia
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)[1]
Playing position Winger
Club information
Current team
Nottingham Forest
Number 18
Youth career
Swindon Town
Macclesfield Town
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2007–2008 Milton Keynes Dons 0 (0)
2007–2008 Crawley Town (loan) 25 (2)
2008–2010 Torquay United 50 (6)
2009 Kettering Town (loan) 5 (0)
2010–2011 Lincoln City 33 (3)
2011–2012 Bristol Rovers 30 (4)
2012–2016 Middlesbrough 50 (11)
2015 Brighton & Hove Albion (loan) 5 (0)
2015–2016 Huddersfield Town (loan) 15 (3)
2016 Leeds United (loan) 12 (1)
2016– Nottingham Forest 19 (1)
National team
2015– Gambia 4 (2)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 10:16, 8 May 2017 (UTC).
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 18:24, 5 April 2017 (UTC)

Mustapha Soon Carayol (born 4 September 1988) is a Gambian professional footballer who plays as a winger for Nottingham Forest and for the Gambian national team. In addition to be eligible to play for Senegal, Carayol has a British passport.

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Born in Banjul,[1] Carayol began his career as a youth player with Swindon Town and when Paul Ince moved from Swindon to become manager of Macclesfield Town in 2006 he took Carayol with him as a trainee. At the time he was quoted as saying "I'm happy to clean the whole first team's boots all season for this opportunity".[3]

When Ince became manager of Milton Keynes Dons in 2007, he signed Carayol again,[4][5] offering him his first professional contract.[6] He made his first team debut for MK Dons against Sheffield United in the League Cup on 28 August 2007 and went on to appear in one further cup game.[7][8]

In October 2007, Carayol joined Crawley Town on loan to gain further first team experience.[9] It came after when Carayol played against them in the training ground the week before.[10] Carayol made his Crawley Town debut, which he scored, in a 1–1 draw against Aldershot Town.[11] Soon after, Carayol’s loan spell with Crawley Town was soon extended for another month[12] and again until the end of the season.[13] Carayol then scored two more goals against Grays Athletic[14] and Stafford Rangers.[15]

Torquay United[edit]

On 13 July 2008, he was signed by Torquay United on a two–year contract.[16]

Caroyol made his Torquay United debut, in the opening game of the season, where he came on as a substitute for Danny Stevens in the 68th minutes, in a 1–1 draw against Histon.[17] In his first season at Torquay United, Carayol made thirty appearance for the club and helped the club reach promotion back to League Two.

The following season saw Carayol making his first appearance of the season on 15 August 2009, coming on as a substitute for Scott Rendell in the 68th minutes, and scored in a 5–3 loss against Dagenham & Redbridge.[18] Carayol’s last appearance for the club before joining Kettering Town came on 12 September 2009, where he set up a goal for the club, in a 2–1 loss against Rochdale.[19] After returning from a loan spell at Kettering Town, Carayol made his first appearance on 6 February 2010, where he played 45 minutes in the match, in a 1–0 loss against Hereford United.[20] Carayol then scored his first goal for the club for the first time in five months, in a 1–1 draw against Cheltenham Town on 23 February 2010.[21] Carayol went on to score four more goals against Darlington,[22] Rochdale,[23] Grimsby Town[24] and Bury.[25] Carayol later finished the 2009–10 season, making 30 appearance and scoring six times.

On 17 September 2009 he joined Kettering Town on a three-month emergency loan deal.[26] Carayol made his Kettering Town debut the next day, in a 2–1 loss against Crawley Town.[27] Carayol only made five appearance, due to suffering from a hamstring injury that kept him out for a month.[28]

With his contract expiring at the end of the 2009–10 season,[29] Carayol turned down a new contract at Torquay United, but turned it down and as a result, he was dropped from the first team in the last game of the season against Notts County,[30] as well as, a strained relationship with Manager Paul Buckle.[31]

Lincoln City[edit]

In May 2010, it was announced that Lincoln City had agreed terms with the player although a fee would have to be set to determine how much compensation Lincoln City must pay Torquay due to Carayol being under the age of 24.[32] In August it was announced that a deal had been struck between the two clubs with Lincoln paying £35,000 over staged payments plus other clauses.[33] Upon joining Lincoln City, Carayol stated the move does not have nothing to do with money or moving closer to his hometown, London, but for first team football.[34]

Carayol scored on his debut, in the opening game of the season, in a 2–1 loss against Rotherham United.[35] Carayol played in the next game against his former club, Torquay United, for the first time, where he received a warm reception from Torquay United supporters, which they lost 2–1.[36] After being sidelined for two matches throughout August, due to ankle injury,[37] Carayol returned to the first team and then scored again on 30 October 2010, in a 2–2 draw against Wycombe Wanderers[38] and scored three weeks later on 20 November 2010, as well as, setting up two of the three goals, in a 3–1 win over Hereford United.[39] Seven days later, on 27 November 2010, Carayol scored again in the second round of FA Cup, in a 2–2 draw against Hereford United.[40] However, as the 2010–11 season progressed, Carayol began to have injuries plagued, which saw him restricted to 37 appearance in all competitions and Lincoln City relegated from the Football League.[41][42][43][44]

Because of this, Carayol’s future at Lincoln City was doubt after a clause was activated that gives him a freedom to quit the club[45] and in May 2011 he was made available for transfer by the club after a mass clear out of players following relegation from the Football League.[46] Upon leaving the club, Carayol thanked Lincoln City supporters and credited the club for helping him improve as a player.[47]

Bristol Rovers[edit]

On 17 June 2011, Bristol Rovers signed Carayol for an undisclosed fee, on a two-year deal.[48]

Carayol made his Bristol Rovers debut, in the opening game of the season, coming on as a substitute for Joe Anyinsah, in a 3–2 win over Wimbledon.[49] After struggling to regain his starting line-up, Carayol was sent to play in the reserve and scored a hat–trick, in a 4–4 draw against Brentford Reserve on 28 September 2011.[50] Carayol then scored his first Bristol Rovers goal in the first round of the FA Cup, in a 3–1 win over Corby Town[51] and then scored in the second round of the FA Cup, in a 6–1 win over Totton.[52] Two weeks later, on 16 December 2011, he scored his first league goal for the club, in a 4–1 loss against Gillingham.[53]

His performances in League 2 attracted the attention of Championship club Barnsley who had a bid turned down for him in January.[54] Amid to the transfer speculation, Carayol suffered a groin injury and was substituted after 28 minutes into the start during a 3–2 loss against Aston Villa in the third round of the FA Cup.[55] After weeks on the sidelined, Carayol made his return to the first team, coming on as a substitute in the 69th minutes, in a 0–0 draw against Oxford United on 18 February 2012.[56] After returning to the first team, Carayol then scored his first goal in three months, in a 1–0 win over Wimbledon on 17 March 2012.[57] On 6 April 2012, Carayol scored again, in a 2–2 draw against Gillingham[58] and after being sidelined for one game,[59] he scored on his return on 14 April 2012, in a 7–1 win over Burton Albion.[60] Two weeks later on 28 April 2012, Carayol scored a hat–trick assist, in a 5–1 win over Accrington Stanley.[61] Carayol finished the 2011–12 season, making 35 appearance and scoring 6 times in all competition.

Despite keen to help the club reach promotion ahead of the 2012–13 season,[62] in May 2012, however, Bristol Rovers confirmed they had turned down a 6 figure bid from an unnamed Championship club for Carayol,[63] which rumoured to be Derby County.[64] As a result, the club began open talks with him about extending his contract.[65] With his future at Bristol Rovers become increasingly in doubt, there was a slim chance for Carayol staying at the club.[66] It came after when Carayol delayed his decision to sign a new contract with Bristol Rovers.[67]

Middlesbrough[edit]

Carayol signed for Middlesbrough on a three-year deal on 1 August 2012, for an undisclosed fee.[68] Upon joining Middlesbrough, Carayol stated he cannot wait to play in the second level high tier and that the move expressed his delight.[69]

Carayol made his Middlesbrough debut in the first round of League Cup, in a 2–1 win against Bury.[70] After missing the start of Middlesbrough's league campaign, due to a hamstring injury,[71] Carayol returned in the second round of the League Cup against Gillingham on 28 August 2012, in which he scored his first goal for the club.[72] He scored his first league goal for Middlesbrough on 15 September 2012, against Ipswich Town on his home debut, scoring in stoppage time in a 2–0 victory.[73] However, Carayol soon suffered a knee injury that kept him out for four months.[74] Carayol made his return team return in mid–January[75] and then scored on his return from the first team, in a 3–2 loss against Barnsley on 9 February 2013.[76] Then on 16 April 2013, Carayol scored in a 1–0 home win over Nottingham Forest.[77] Carayol later finished the 2012–13 season, making 18 appearance and scoring three times.

In the 2013–14 season, Carayol scored in a 1–1 home draw with Sheffield Wednesday on 31 August 2013.[78] Four weeks later, on 21 September 2013, he then scored again, in a 3–3 draw against Bournemouth.[79] Carayol later scored two more goals of 2013 against Leeds United[80] and Birmingham City.[81] Carayol then scored four more goals towards the end of the 2013–14 season against Bolton Wanderers,[82] a brace against Blackpool[83] and Nottingham Forest.[84] However, on 18 March 2014, Carayol ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament against Bournemouth in a 0–0 draw, which would keep him out for the remainder of the season and also a large proportion of the following 2014/15 season.[85][86] Despite the injury, Carayol finished 2013–14 season, making 33 appearance and scoring eight times in all competitions.

After his loan spell at Brighton & Hove Albion came to an end, Carayol signed a contract with the club on 28 April 2015, keeping him until 2018.[87] However, just a two year left to his contract, Carayol left the club by mutual consent.[88] During his time at Middlesbrough, Carayol has become affectionately known as Muzzy.[71]

Loan Spells[edit]

On 26 March 2015, Carayol signed a loan contract with Brighton & Hove Albion for the rest of the season in order to regain match fitness.[89] Carayol made his Brighton & Hove Albion debut the next day, where he played 81 minutes, in a 1–0 loss against Rotherham United.[90] Carayol made five appearance before returning to the parent club.[91]

On 27 August 2015, Carayol joined fellow Football League Championship side Huddersfield Town on a season-long loan.[92] Carayol made his début as a substitute in the 1–0 defeat to Queens Park Rangers on 29 August 2015 at the John Smith's Stadium, playing 10 minutes.[93] He scored his first goal for the club and set up one of the goals in the 4–1 win over Bolton Wanderers on 19 September 2015.[94] Carayol then scored two more goals against Rotherham United[95] and Bolton Wanderers.[96] After 15 appearances, scoring 3 league goals, Carayol's season-long loan with Huddersfield Town was cut short and he left the club at the beginning of January.[97]

On 8 January 2016, Carayol joined fellow Championship side Leeds United until the end of the season.[98] He scored on his debut appearance on 9 January 2016 against Rotherham United to help Leeds advance to the fourth round of the FA Cup.[99] Three weeks later on 26 January 2016, Carayol scored his second goal for Leeds in a 1–1 draw with Brentford.[100] Carayol went on to make twelve appearance for the club and despite the club keen on signing him on a permanent basis,[101] Carayol opted to return to his parent club instead.[102]

Nottingham Forest[edit]

After leaving Middlesbrough by mutual consent on the 31 August 2016, Carayol signed for Nottingham Forest on a two–year contract that day.[103] His Forest début followed on 11 September, starting in a 2–2 draw against Aston Villa.[104] On 27 November Carayol praised the team spirit present among the players at the club:

"We have a good group of players here. I know every player always says this, but I felt as though I had been here for months, a week after I had signed. Everyone does make you feel welcome. There is a good spirit in this squad."[105]

Carayol scored his first goal for the club in a 3-2 win over Reading on 22 April 2017.[106]

International career[edit]

Carayol is eligible to play for Gambia through his father, Senegal through his mother and England as he holds a British passport.[107] In 2015, Carayol was capped by Gambia for the first time.[108] Seven years before, Carayol rejected a national call-up from Gambia, citing his commitment at Bristol Rovers and stated that he could play for the national team one day.[107] However, Carayol later stated being called up by Gambia was the right time following a consultation from his family.[109]

Carayol then made his Gambia debut against Uganda in a 1–1 draw on 10 June 2015.[110] He then gained his second cap against Mauritania in March 2016 where he scored a brilliant solo goal,[111] he made his international home debut in a 0–0 draw a few days later.

Career statistics[edit]

As of match played 7 May 2017[112]
Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Other[A] Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Milton Keynes Dons 2007–08 League Two 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 2 0
Crawley Town (loan) 2007–08 Conference 25 2 0 0 1 0 26 2
Torquay United 2008–09 Conference 30 0 3 0 0 0 33 0
2009–10 League Two 20 6 0 0 1 0 0 0 21 6
Total 50 6 3 0 1 0 0 0 54 6
Kettering Town (loan) 2009–10 Conference 5 0 0 0 0 0 5 0
Lincoln City 2010–11 League Two 33 3 3 1 1 0 0 0 37 4
Bristol Rovers 2011–12 League Two 30 4 3 2 2 0 0 0 35 6
Middlesbrough 2012–13 Championship 18 3 1 0 2 1 21 4
2013–14 Championship 32 8 0 0 1 0 33 8
2014–15 Championship 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2015–16 Championship 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 50 11 1 0 3 1 0 0 54 12
Brighton & Hove Albion (loan) 2014–15 Championship 5 0 0 0 0 0 5 0
Huddersfield Town (loan) 2015–16 Championship 15 3 0 0 0 0 15 3
Leeds United (loan) 2015–16 Championship 12 1 2 1 0 0 14 2
Nottingham Forest 2016–17 Championship 19 1 1 0 1 0 21 1
Career total 244 31 13 4 9 1 2 0 268 36
A. ^ The "Other" column constitutes appearances and goals (including substitutes) in the Football League Trophy and the Conference League Cup.

International goals[edit]

Scores and results list Gambia's goal tally first.[113]
No Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1. 25 March 2016 Stade Olympique, Nouakchott, Mauritania  Mauritania 1–1 1–2 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualification
2. 27 March 2017 Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium, Rabat, Morocco  Central African Republic 2–1 2–1 Friendly

Personal life[edit]

Born in Banjul, Gambia, Carayol’s father came from Gambia and his mother came from Senegal. Carayol’s cousin is Cherno Samba and his grandfather is chairman of Gambia's independence electoral commission in Banjul.[107]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]