Yoann Folly is a French/Togolese defensive midfielder who was born in Paris, France on 6th June 1985. Folly began his career at Saint-Etienne, but was snapped up by Southampton as a youngster in 2003. The French U21 starlet made his Saints debut on March 27th 2004 in a 1-0 win over Tottenham, following an injury crisis at St Mary's. Folly retained his place for the rest of the season and adapted to Premiership football brilliantly, looking completely at ease, as if he had been playing top level football for years. He started off attacks from his position just in front of the back four, and did all the simple but necessary things right.
Folly had a nightmare start to the 2004/05 season putting in a terrible performance in the opening day defeat at Aston Villa in August. The Frenchman made just two further sub appearances over the next couple of months. Harry Redknapp threw Folly on in the 5-1 humilation at Tottenham on December 18th 2004, but then later deemed him not good enough. He joined Nottingham Forest for a short loan spell in January, and scored on his debut for the club in a 3-0 win at QPR in the FA Cup 3rd round. Folly also spent a month with Preston in April 2005.
Folly only made occasional appearances for Saints during the first half of 2005/06, mostly in cup matches. Once again, the youngster failed to recapture the form he had shown a few seasons ago in the Premiership. In January 2006 Folly joined Sheffield Wednesday on loan, who were managed by his former Southampton boss Paul Sturrock
Folly rejected the offer of a new deal at Southampton to sign for Sheffield Wednesday on a permanent basis in the summer of 2006 for an undisclosed fee. The former Saints man started 2006/07 reasonably well, but found himself on the bench more often than not as the season went on. It didn't help that Sturrock, the man who took Folly to the club was replaced by Brian Laws. Folly scored his first ever goal in the Carling Cup on 28th August 2007 in a 2-1 win over Hartlepool. He was appearing less and less in league competition however, and handed in a transfer request in January 2008.
Folly was reunited with Paul Sturrock yet again when he joined Plymouth on 11th January 2008 for £200,000. He struggled to make much of an impact at Home Park however, spending most of his time on the bench. Despite representing France at youth level, Folly won his first international cap for Togo in August 2008 in a match with DR Congo. Folly remained a bit part player at club level. He made only 12 appearances for Plymouth in 2008/09.
2009/10 was another frustrating season for Folly, who once again struggled for playing time. In February 2010 Folly joined League 2 play-off hopefuls Dagenham & Redbridge, and helped the club to a 7th place finish. On 2nd May 2010 Plymouth announced Folly's departure from the club after his contract expired.
On 26th July 2010 Folly joined Scottish Premier League outfit Aberdeen. The former Sheffield Wednesday player made his debut for the club on 14th August 2010 in a 4-0 win over Hamilton. On Boxing Day 2010 he scored his first goal for the club in a 2-1 win at Hibernian. On New Year's Day 2011 Folly suffered a broken ankle in a 1-1 draw with Dundee United, which ruled him out for the rest of the season. He would fail to make another appearance for The Dons before his release in May 2012.
In the summer of 2012 Folly hooked up with Paul Sturrock yet again, joining Southend on trial. Fitness issues meant a deal was impossible, however. Folly retired from the game in August 2012 after being diagnosed with chronic pulmonary embolism