On This Day – Billy ‘Bonzo’ Bonds Born

17-9-1946: West Ham legend Billy ‘Bonzo’ Bonds was bond on this day in 1946. Bonds made 793 appearances for West Ham between 1967 and 1988. He was born in Woolwich London and played for Charlton before he was signed by Ron Greenwood for £50,000. He later managed West Ham and London club Millwall.

Bonds played both in the centre of defence and in central midfield. In 1975 he led West Ham to a FA Cup vitory defeating Fulham 2-0 in the final. Alan Taylor scored both goals. The following season West Ham reached the final of the Cup Winners’ Cup final but lost 4-2 in the final against the Belgian team Anderlecht. In 1980 Bond’s captained West Ham to a second FA Cup triumpth when Trevor Brooking‘s header gave the Hammers a 1-0 victory over Arsenal.

Billy Bonds played his final game for West Ham in 1988 aged 41 years and 225 days.

If anyone kicked me I used to give Bill a wink and say ‘Bonzo! Have you seen what they’re doing to me?’ Then Bill would sort them out in the next five minutes  and I’d have the freedom of the field.

Trevor Brooking, 1988. From The Cassell Soccer Companion.

Record appearances for West Ham:

  1. Billy Bonds 793 (1967-1988)
  2. Frank Lampard Snr. 674 (1967-1985)
  3. Bobby Moore 646 (1958-1974)
  4. Trevor Brooking 635 (1967-1984)
  5. Alvin Martin 601 (1977-1996)



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