Stephen Carr

Stephen Carr (born 29 August 1976) is an Irish former footballer who played for and captained Birmingham City from 2009 to 2013. He previously played for Premier League teams Tottenham Hotspur and, for a shorter spell, Newcastle United. He is a former international player with the Republic of Ireland. His primary position was right back, but had been known to deputise at left back or centre back when required.

Stephen Carr
Carr in pre-season for Birmingham in August 2011
Personal information
Full name Stephen Carr[1]
Date of birth (1976-08-29) 29 August 1976
Place of birth Dublin, Ireland
Height 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)[1]
Playing position Right back
Youth career
198x–1991 Stella Maris
1991–1993 Tottenham Hotspur
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1993–2004 Tottenham Hotspur 226 (7)
2004–2008 Newcastle United 78 (1)
2009–2013 Birmingham City 106 (0)
Total 410 (8)
National team
1993–1994 Republic of Ireland U18 6 (0)
1994–1997 Republic of Ireland U21 12 (1)
1999–2007 Republic of Ireland 44 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

In May 2013, he confirmed his intention to retire from football.

Club career

Tottenham Hotspur

Carr was born in Dublin.[1] As a fifteen-year-old, he went on trial from Stella Maris to Tottenham Hotspur and was signed up by then manager Ossie Ardiles. He made his debut for the club on 29 September 1993 away to Ipswich Town in the 1993–94 FA Premier League season. However he had to wait until the 1996–97 season to establish himself as a regular first-team player, when he made 28 appearances that campaign.

He picked up a League Cup medal with Spurs in 1999 after contributing to a 1–0 win over Leicester City in the final. The 1999–2000 season was arguably his best ever as far as his performances are concerned, as well as scoring a "thunderous piledriver" against champions Manchester United.[2]

His reputation continued to grow throughout the 2000–01 season, and other clubs were beginning to show interest in signing him. However, in the summer of 2001, he began to have problems with his knee and required an operation which he underwent in September of that year. He did not make any appearances in the 2001–02 season and also missed the 2002 World Cup finals.[3] It was not until October 2002 that Carr was back fully fit. As he returned to form, interest from other Premiership clubs started to resurface. Carr was linked with Manchester United, and a move to Newcastle United was on the cards.

Newcastle United

Carr signed for Newcastle United in August 2004 when then manager Bobby Robson signed him for a fee of £2 million on a four-year contract. Soon after he signed Robson was sacked from his managerial post by chairman Freddy Shepherd. He was replaced by Graeme Souness, who, like Robson, saw Carr as a first-team player. Carr's debut for the club came in a 2–2 draw against Middlesbrough on 14 August. He played in 26 league games in the 2004–05 season, scoring once. His first goal for the club came from a "fierce shot from well outside the area" against Southampton.[4] He helped Newcastle reach the quarter-finals of the UEFA Cup and the semi-final of the FA Cup. Newcastle finished 14th, which put pressure on Souness.

In the 2005–06 season, he only managed to make 19 league appearances for the club as the persistent knee injury ruled him out for two months. The team finished 7th in the league under the new management of Glenn Roeder, after Souness was sacked in January.

Carr was one of the many injury victims during Newcastle's 2006–07 season and was out with a fractured foot for a few months. He returned for the 2–2 draw against West Ham United on 20 January 2007, filling in at an unfamiliar left-back position after impressive displays from Nolberto Solano at right-back during Carr's absence, putting question marks over his future at the club. He fell further down the pecking order during the 2007–08 season with the signings of Habib Beye and Geremi. Beye's impressive form and Carr's inability to maintain fitness resulted in Kevin Keegan deciding against renewing Carr's contract and he was released at the end of the season.[5]

After Newcastle

Carr was linked with moves to Aston Villa, Everton, West Ham United, Wigan Athletic, Hertha Berlin, Racing Genk and Bohemians. He was also on trial with League One side Leicester City where he would have linked up with Nigel Pearson whom he played under at Newcastle. Having failed to find a suitable club, Carr announced his retirement from all forms of football on 1 December 2008.[6]

Birmingham City

In February 2009 he began training with Birmingham City with a view to coming out of retirement,[7] and signed a one-month contract with the club on 23 February.[8] He made his debut the following day, playing the whole of the goalless draw away to Crystal Palace.[9] After impressing during the initial month, Carr signed an extension until the end of the season.[10] Following Birmingham's promotion to the Premier League, Carr signed a new two-year contract with the club.[11] Made acting captain in the absence through injury and squad rotation of Lee Carsley,[12] he was a member of the Birmingham team that went 15 games unbeaten in all competitions, including a club record 12 unbeaten in the top flight, during the 2009–10 Premier League season.[13][14] Towards the end of the season Carr received a one-match suspension for improper conduct after making an "offensive gesture" towards Aston Villa supporters at the end of the local derby lost by Birmingham via a late, controversial penalty.[15]

He captained the team to victory in the 2011 Football League Cup Final as Birmingham defeated favourites Arsenal 2–1.[16] Carr played every game of the 2010–11 Premier League season, at the end of which Birmingham were relegated to the Championship, and the club took up the option of retaining his services for another year.[17]

Carr made his 100th appearance for Birmingham in the Europa League play-off round first leg against Portuguese club Nacional, the first time the club had participated in major European competition for nearly 50 years.[18] He missed much of the second half of the 2011–12 season with knee cartilage damage, and his contract expired in June, but after the appointment of former Newcastle teammate Lee Clark as Birmingham's manager, he signed a one-year deal with the club.[19] Investigation of an injury sustained in a pre-season friendly in August revealed knee damage requiring surgery predicted to keep him out for six months.[20]

Carr was unable to play again, and at the end of the 2012–13 season he announced his retirement from football. Although Clark had hoped to persuade him to stay at Birmingham as a coach, Carr confirmed that he and his family intended to move to Spain where he had business interests.[21]

International career

Carr has represented his country at schoolboy, youth, under-18, under-21 and full international levels.[22] He missed out on the 2002 World Cup due to injury.[23]

Carr initially retired from the international scene after the team failed to qualify for the 2006 World Cup, having played 39 times for his country.[24] However he was convinced to continue playing international football by new Ireland manager Steve Staunton.[24] Due to injuries and the sacking of Irish manager Staunton, Carr retired from international football on 14 November 2007.[25]

Career statistics


Club statistics
Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
Division AppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoals
Tottenham Hotspur 1993–94[3] Premier League 10001020
1994–95[3] Premier League 00000000
1995–96[1][3][26] Premier League 0000002[lower-alpha 1]020
1996–97[3] Premier League 2601030300
1997–98[3] Premier League 3803020430
1998–99[3] Premier League 3707081521
1999–2000[3] Premier League 34300104[lower-alpha 2]0393
2000–01[3] Premier League 2832030333
2001–02[3] Premier League 00000000
2002–03[27] Premier League 3001010320
2003–04[28] Premier League 3213040391
Tottenham Hotspur total 2267170231602728
Newcastle United 2004–05[29] Premier League 26140009[lower-alpha 2]0391
2005–06[30] Premier League 19020003[lower-alpha 1]0240
2006–07[31] Premier League 23000108[lower-alpha 3]0320
2007–08[32] Premier League 1002000120
Newcastle United total 78180102001071
Birmingham City 2008–09[33] Championship 1300000130
2009–10[34] Premier League 3504010400
2010–11[35] Premier League 3801050440
2011–12[36][37] Championship 20010003[lower-alpha 4]0240
2012–13[38] Championship 00000000
Birmingham City total 10606060301210
Career total 41083103012905009
  1. Appearances in UEFA Intertoto Cup
  2. Appearances in UEFA Cup
  3. Two appearances in UEFA Intertoto Cup, six in UEFA Cup
  4. Appearances in UEFA Europa League



Tottenham Hotspur

Newcastle United

Birmingham City



  1. Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2007). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2007–08. Edinburgh: Mainstream. p. 74. ISBN 978-1-84596-246-3.
  2. "Top 10 Spurs v M Utd". Sky Sports. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  3. "Stephen Carr". Tottenham Hotspur F.C. Archived from the original on 6 August 2002.
  4. "Southampton 1–2 Newcastle". BBC Sport. 19 September 2004. Retrieved 9 September 2009.
  5. "Trio to leave Newcastle". Sky Sports. 6 May 2008. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  6. "Carr calls it quits". Sky Sports. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 1 December 2008.
  7. "Stephen Carr ready to come out of retirement for Birmingham City". Birmingham Mail. 13 February 2009. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  8. "Carr gears up for Blues". Birmingham City F.C. 23 February 2009. Archived from the original on 15 April 2011. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  9. Tattum, Colin (25 February 2009). "Crystal Palace 0, Birmingham 0". Birmingham Mail. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  10. "Blues in new Carr deal". Birmingham City F.C. 20 March 2009. Archived from the original on 22 March 2009. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  11. "Carr secures Birmingham contract". BBC Sport. 15 May 2009. Retrieved 15 May 2009.
  12. "Stephen Carr earns captain's armband for Birmingham City". Birmingham Mail. 21 August 2009. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  13. "Fresh fortunes at St Andrew's". FIFA. 15 January 2010. Retrieved 1 June 2010.
  14. Tattum, Colin (16 May 2010). "Colin Tattum analyses the way ahead for Birmingham City". Sunday Mercury. Birmingham. Retrieved 1 June 2010.
  15. "Birmingham's Stephen Carr handed one-match ban for offensive gesture". The Guardian. Press Association. 29 April 2010. Retrieved 8 September 2010.
  16. "Carling Cup final: McLeish hails 'greatest achievement'". BBC Sport. 27 February 2011. Retrieved 28 February 2011.
  17. "Relegated Birmingham confirm exit of six players". BBC Sport. 27 May 2011. Retrieved 14 August 2012.
  18. Tattum, Colin (19 August 2011). "Nacional 0, Birmingham City 0". Birmingham Mail. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  19. Tattum, Colin (5 July 2012). "Stephen Carr explains the reasons for signing up again with Birmingham City". Birmingham Mail. Retrieved 16 July 2012.
  20. "Birmingham City skipper Stephen Carr sidelined again". BBC Sport. 14 September 2012. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  21. Tattum, Colin (3 May 2013). "Stephen Carr: 'I will never forget that day lifting the cup.'". Birmingham Mail. Retrieved 3 May 2013.
  22. "Stephen Carr". Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  23. Brodkin, Jon (4 April 2002). "Carr breaks down on way to World Cup". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  25. "Carr calls time on International career". RTÉ Sport. 14 November 2007. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  26. "Inside the Intertoto Cup". The Observer. 17 June 2001. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  27. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2002/2003". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  28. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2003/2004". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  29. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2004/2005". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  30. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2005/2006". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  31. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2006/2007". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  32. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2007/2008". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  33. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2008/2009". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  34. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2009/2010". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  35. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2010/2011". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  36. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2011/2012". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  37. "S. Carr". Soccerway. Global Sports Media. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
  38. "Games played by Stephen Carr in 2012/2013". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 3 May 2013.
  39. "Carr named Player of Year". Tottenham Hotspur F.C. 23 December 2000. Archived from the original on 17 July 2011.
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