50. William “Fatty” Foulke: 1905-06
Aside from his legendary stature, reported to stand at 6’4″ and weigh over 300lbs, William “Fatty” Foulke is best known by Chelsea fans as the first ever keeper to ever play for the club. Although he was built more like an NFL lineman, Foulke was a two-sport athlete in both cricket and football.
He began his career with Sheffield United 1894 until he was convinced to join Chelsea in 1905 and was even named club captain. Foulke was a major crowd pleaser and his antics of storming off the field and throwing around opposing defenders were just as impressive as his size and skill.
The legendary keeper is also credited in one way or another for two of football’s staples. The famous chant of “Who ate all the pies?” was reportedly directed towards him by his own fans at United and through some strange coincidence his involvement in the game lead to the creation of ball boys. Chelsea wanted to call more attention to his size, as if they really had to, by placing two boys behind his goal to retrieve the ball if it had gone out of play.
Foulke also made a single appearance for the England national team in 1897 but, similar to Andre the Giant, the literal magnitude of the man took centre-stage. He was not the best keeper to have ever played for Chelsea but he was the first and definitely the biggest. He does still hold the record for consecutive clean sheets by a keeper with nine, a record that has stood for 110 years.