|Full name:||William Arthur Bonds|
|Date of birth:||September 17, 1946|
|Clubs played for:||Charlton, West Ham|
|Clubs managed:||West Ham, Millwall|
Billy Bonds began his pro career with Charlton, making his debut against Northampton in February 1965. A hard-working full-back, Bonds quickly established himself as a first-team regular and went on to make 95 league appearances for the Addicks over the next two years.
He was snapped up by West Ham in 1967 for £50,000 and continued to impress in defence, before Ron Greenwood made the decision to switch him to the centre of midfield during the 1970-71 season. The move would prove a revelation, with Bonds' tireless work helping Trevor Brooking to express his creative talents to great effect.
Following the departure of Bobby Moore, Bonds was appointed captain and helped the Hammers to FA Cup glory in 1975. The following year he led his team to the European Cup-Winners' Cup final, where they lost out to Anderlecht 4-2. Bonds was converted to a central defender soon after and suffered relegation at the end of the 1977-78 season, before leading West Ham to a shock FA Cup victory over First Division Arsenal in 1980.
He hung up his boots in 1984 but came out of retirement a year later before finally ending his playing days in 1988, with his last appearance coming at the age of 41.
Having been a youth coach at West Ham since the end of his playing days, Bonds was handed the managerial reins in February 1990 after the departure of Lou Macari. He was an instant success, leading the club to promotion in his first full season in charge. West Ham were relegated in 1991-92 but Bonds again led them to promotion the following season.
The club enjoyed a respectable mid-table finish in 1993-94 but Bonds resigned soon after the end of the season following a fall out with the board. He returned to management with Millwall in May 1997 but his tenure was short-lived, as he was sacked by the club after just a year in charge.
West Ham 3-0 Chelsea (First Division, March 2, 1974)
Bonds celebrated being crowned Daily Mirror player of the month by hitting his first - and only - hat-trick for West Ham. After receiving his £100 cheque and trophy on the Upton Park pitch, Bonds grabbed all of the goals in a comprehensive defeat of London rivals Chelsea. The victory stretched West Ham's unbeaten league run to nine matches.
West Ham 1-0 Arsenal (FA Cup final, May 10, 1980)
Five years after leading West Ham to FA Cup success, Bonds returned to Wembley to skipper the club to another FA Cup triumph. He was superb at the back alongside Alvin Martin, the pair combining to keep Arsenal's deadly strike duo of Frank Stapleton and Alan Sunderland out of the game. Trevor Brooking's early header was enough to see West Ham's name on the cup once more.
West Ham 1-1 Ipswich (First Division, September 7, 1982)
This was the match in which 36-year-old Bonds made his 545th league appearance for West Ham, breaking the record of former captain Bobby Moore. John Wark put Ipswich in front before Frank Lampard grabbed an equaliser but - to the disappointment of a rousing Upton Park crowd - the Hammers were unable to cap Bonds' special day with a victory.
|West Ham||FA Cup||1975, 1980|
Did You Know...?
Bonds is the only West Ham captain to lift the FA Cup on two occasions – in 1975 and 1980.
Bonds holds the West Ham appearance record, having turned out for the club 793 times in all competitions.
He is also the oldest player to feature for the club after making his last appearance in 1988 at the age of 41 years and 226 days.
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