John Bond (footballer) - Playing Career

Playing Career

Bond was born in Dedham, Essex. He played for North-East Essex Schools and Essex Army cadets before joining West Ham United in March 1950 from Colchester Casuals, his league debut coming two seasons later in a 2–1 away win against Coventry City. Bond had been spotted playing by West Ham assistant-manager Ted Fenton when he was manager with Colchester United. He had convinced manager Charlie Paynter to offer Bond a contract and Bond turned professional in March 1950. His ability as a goal-scoring right-back soon resulted in him gaining a regular place in the Hammers side, his partnership with Noel Cantwell proving particularly useful. As West Ham won the Second Division title in 1957–58, Bond missed only one game, and scored eight goals. At this time he was also selected for the England 'A' side. A popular favourite of the fans at Upton Park, he was usually referred to as 'Muffin' because of his ability to kick like a mule. In 1959, he was tried as a centre forward, scoring twice in one game against Bolton Wanderers and a hat-trick against Chelsea in February 1960. By 1963, he was in competition for the right-back position with Joe Kirkup, but was picked for the 1964 FA Cup Final win at Wembley towards the end of his Upton Park career, but missed out on the European Cup Winners' Cup Final victory the following season, despite playing four times in the earlier rounds of the competition. In January 1966, after 381 league games for the Hammers, in which he scored 32 times, Bond left to join Torquay United, then managed by his former West Ham team-mate Frank O'Farrell. He played 130 league games for the Gulls, scoring 12 goals, and helped Torquay to promotion at the end of his first season. He retired in 1969, having already opened a sweet shop (Bondy's Tuck Shop) in the Torre area of Torquay.

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