Benjamin Howard Baker

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Benjamin Howard Baker
Ben Baker.jpg
0Full Name Benjamin Howard Baker
0Date of Birth 13 February 1892
0Place of Birth Aigburth, Liverpool
0Position Goalkeeper
0Chelsea career 1921-1926
0Debut 15 October 1921
0Games (goals) 93 (1)
0Other clubs Everton
Oldham Athletic

Benjamin Howard Baker (13 February 1892 – 10 September 1987) was an English international goalkeeper who played for Chelsea between 1921 and 1925 as an amateur. Sources differ as to whether his surname was "Baker", "Howard-Baker" or "Howard Baker". A native of Merseyside, he played for both Liverpool and Everton, in addition to amateur side Corinthians, and was also a talented athlete who represented Britain at two Olympic Games. He is the only goalkeeper to have scored a competitive goal for Chelsea.


Before Chelsea

An all-round athlete, Howard Baker spent the early years of his (always amateur) football career playing for various north-west amateur sides, before turning out for Blackburn Rovers and Preston North End. He then returned to his home city to join Liverpool, before moving across Stanley Park to Everton in early 1921.

Chelsea career

Howard Baker joined Chelsea from Everton later the same year, making his debut on 15 October 1921. Just over a month later he became the first, and as of 2012, only, goalkeeper to score a competitive goal for Chelsea (non-competitively, Dave Beasant scored in Kerry Dixon’s testimonial in March 1995), converting a late penalty in a 1-0 win against Bradford City.

A favourite with the Stamford Bridge crowd in part due to his flamboyant style, [1] he went on to appear regularly for the Blues as an amateur over the next four years, and made his last appearance in November 1925.

After Chelsea

Howard Baker returned to Everton following his time in west London, and made his last appearance in October 1926 before moving to Oldham Athletic.

After retiring from the game he joined the family firm of soap and chemical manufacturers and became a prominent businessman in the Liverpool area. [2] Howard Baker lived to the age of 95; he passed away on 10 September 1987 in Warminster, Wiltshire.


Howard Baker made his England debut while at Everton, in a friendly against Belgium in May 1921, shortly before moving south to Chelsea. He had to wait nearly four-and-a-half years for his second – and last – cap; appearing against Northern Ireland in a Home Championship match in October 1925. [3]


Howard Baker represented Great Britain at the 1912 and 1920 Olympic Games. In 1912 he finished eleventh in the high jump event and 16th in the standing high jump competition. Eight years later he finished sixth in the 1920 Olympic high jump contest and eighth in the triple jump event. As a high jumper he improved the British record on three occasions, [4] and held the record for a quarter of a century.

Beyond football and athletics he was an all-round sportsman; playing water-polo as a goalkeeper, and also turning his talents to tennis, swimming and cricket. [5]


Season League FA Cup Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
1921-22 23 1 1 0 24 1
1922-23 17 0 0 0 17 0
1923-24 11 0 0 0 11 0
1924-25 28 0 0 0 28 0
1925-26 13 0 0 0 13 0
Total 92 1 1 0 93 1


# Season Date Year Competition Opponent Score Result Venue
11921-2219 November1921First DivisionBradford City1-01-0Stamford Bridge
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