Ex-Chelsea star looks unrecognisable more than 20 years after lifting the FA Cup and getting skinned by Nwankwo Kanu for THAT legendary Arsenal hat-trick at Stamford Bridge… though his iconic haircut is still intact!
Chelsea fans have been left stunned by an image of their former hero, 19 years after he left Stamford Bridge, although he still retains one of his most iconic features.
In 1997 the Blues were a completely different club. After winning their first major trophy in over 20 years the previous season, the Stamford Bridge outfit set about assembling a squad capable of winning the league title.
Players came in who would leave a lasting legacy at the club. The likes of Celestine Babayaro, Graeme Le Saux, Gus Poyet and Tore Andre Flo were all snapped up ahead of the 1997-98 campaign under their exciting coach Ruud Gullit.
The other notable addition that summer was an experienced shot-stopper from Eredivisie giants Feyenoord for a fee of £2.5m, making the Dutchman the most expensive goalkeeper in England at the time.
Fortunately for Chelsea, he was worth every penny as he made 179 appearances during a six-year stay in west London.
The former Chelsea star looks unrecognizable from his days at Stamford Bridge in the 90s
Chelsea invested heavily in their squad under manager Ruud Gullit ahead of the 1997-98 season after lifting the FA Cup in May
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Blues fans would come to adore 31-time Netherlands international Ed de Goey before he was unceremoniously usurped by another beloved figure, Carlo Cudicini.
But unlike the Italian, De Goey got his hands on major trophies as the Chelsea No1.
After winning a top-flight title and four Dutch Cups with Feyenoord, the then 31-year-old slotted straight into Gullit’s side and formed a formidable back five that was later bolstered by the addition of World Cup winner Marcel Desailly in 1998.
De Goey made 43 appearances for Chelsea in his debut campaign. He averaged just over one goal per game and made crucial saves as the Blues lifted both the League Cup and the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup.
He claimed his third major trophy at the end of the 1999-2000 season, but a particular De Goey contribution that year may be the most lasting memory of the 6ft 6ins stopper among the wider footballing public.
De Goey was the unlucky goalkeeper between the sticks when Nwankwo Kanu produced his most iconic moment in an Arsenal shirt as the Gunners won 3-2 at Stamford Bridge on 29 October 1999.
Arsene Wenger’s men came from behind to grab goals from Tore Andre Flo and Dan Petrescu before the Nigerian took over proceedings in the final 15 minutes of the London derby.
De Goey could do nothing about Kanu’s sent finish with the outside of his right boot and was equally helpless to stop his thunderous drive at the near post eight minutes later.
Ed de Goey made 179 appearances for Chelsea during his six-year spell at the club from 1997
The Netherlands international was completely undone by Nwankwo Kanu’s skill for his iconic hat-trick for Arsenal against the Blues in 1999
De Goey ended that campaign with his third major trophy in as many seasons at Chelsea
But the Dutchman was left with egg on his face as time ran out in the tie – and he inexplicably advanced to meet the forward near the corner flag – as the Gunners chased a winner.
Kanu crossed to the box with fingers but instead cut the ball inside De Goey, who was left stranded outside his area, and flicked his shot from an impossibly tight angle past Desailly and Frank Leboeuf who retreated to the keeper.
The former Inter Milan and Ajax striker’s three tries were the first the goalkeeper had conceded in front of his home fans that season. It was a rare defect.
Chelsea finished the campaign as FA Cup winners and De Goey achieved two coveted landmarks. He made a club record number of appearances in a campaign (59) and kept the most clean sheets (27), although both these achievements have since been eclipsed.
The end of the 1999-2000 campaign brought a close to his time as Chelsea’s No1 as Carlo Cudicini was acquired from Italian side Castel di Sangro.
De Goey’s Premier League appearances dropped from 37 to 15 and finally to just two in the 2002-03 campaign before he left for Stoke City in the then First Division that summer.
His three years at the Potters were largely unremarkable, with the team sitting comfortably mid-table in the second tier.
The Gouda native finally called time on his career at the age of 40 in 2006. About 12 years earlier, he played every minute for the Netherlands at the 1994 World Cup. His last appearance for the national team came in 1998.
He earned 31 caps for the Netherlands in a competitive era that included ex-Liverpool keeper Sander Westerveld (left) and former Man United stopper Edwin van der Sar (right).
De Goey called time on his career at the end of the 2006 Championship season while playing for Stoke City
De Goey quickly turned to a coaching career after his playing days were over, moving back to London to become a first team coach for QPR. However, he was only in the role for six months before his contract was terminated by new chairman Gianni Paladini.
He then chose to return to the Netherlands where he joined the Dutch team RKC Waalwijk as goalkeeper coach in 2010. Four years later he was away again, this time to DHC Delft, a lower-league Dutch side, before moving to his current team. VOC Rotterdam in 2018.
Away from coaching, De Goey also runs a successful goalkeeper school in Berkel which is a town north of Rotterdam.