765 Mark Bonner

Biography

Midfielder Mark Bonner played a short but important role in Hull City’s retention of Football League status in Warren Joyce’s 1998/99 Great Escape season. Bonner joined the Tigers on loan in early January 1999 and made his debut in a League game against Rotherham United, a fixture that City won 1-0 to break a long winless streak. Bonner scored the winner in what became his only City appearance, a knee injury requiring him to return to parent club Cardiff City for treatment. It was that Rotherham win that provided a watershed moment for Joyce’s Tigers, the start of an 18 match run that saw City lose only twice and lift themselves clear of what seemed like an inevitable relegation.

Mark Bonner was born in Ormskirk and came through the junior ranks at Blackpool. He made his first team debut as a 17 year old in November 1991, a 5-2 Fourth Division win over Aldershot. The Shots’ bankrupcy and expulsion from the Football League meant that Mark’s debut was expunged from the record, so his second “real” debut came 4 days later in 1-1 draw against Chesterfield. Bonner was returned to the reserves after a handful of appearances as the Tangerines won promotion via the Fourth Division play-offs. He played more often in the Third Division (rebranded as League Division 2) in the 1992/93 season and by 1993/94 he was an established figure in Blackpool’s first team midfield. His first Tangerines’ goal came in an August 1993 3-2 win against Wrexham and he went on to score seven times in what became the most productive season of his career in front of goal. His first team chances went into reverse in the 1994/95 season under new manager Sam Allardyce, who gave Bonner only eight starts all season. He re-established himself as a first team regular for Allardyce in 1995/96 and spent two more seasons at Bloomfield Road – when he left Blackpool in July 1998 Bonner had made 221 senior appearances and scored 15 goals across seven seasons.

Bonner joined Cardiff City in July 1998, reuniting with his first Blackpool manager Billy Ayre who was now assitant manager for the Welsh side. After a good start, by October 1998 Mark had dropped out of the first team picture and his loan move to Hull City was designed to give him a regular first team start as well as assist the Tigers’ survival bid. Instead Bonner returned to Cardiff after one game and was restored to the first team in March 1999 and he contributed to the Bluebirds’ promotion to League Division 2. Bonner spent the next four seasons at Cardiff but was rarely a sustained first team starter due to injury problems – he did however contribute to two more promotions during his time at Cardiff, from League Division 3 in 2001 and from League Division 2 in 2003. In March 2004 he moved to Oldham Athletic and spent two seasons at Boundary Park, again on the fringes of the first team. He broke his arm in September 2005, a bad injury that required two surgeries before he was advised to give up playing football. When he retired in the 2006 close season Bonner had added 37 appearances for Oldham to the 170 appearances for Cardiff, taking his career total to 429 senior appearances and 20 goals in a career spanning fourteen seasons.

On his retirement Bonner opened a furniture store in Chorley, Lancashire. In 2013 he moved to Cardiff where he became sales director for another furniture company.

Details

Nationality: England
Date/Place of Birth: 7 June 1974, Ormskirk
Hull City First Game: 9 January 1999, Rotherham United H (League Division 3), 24 years, 216 days old
Hull City Final Game: 9 January 1999, Rotherham United H (League Division 3), 24 years, 216 days old

Clubs

Blackpool (1991-1998), Cardiff City (1998-2004), Hull City (1999, loan), Oldham Athletic (2004-2006)

Hull City Record

Career: 1 apps, 1 goals

Mark Bonner
SeasonLGE
App
LGE
Gls
FAC
App
FAC
Gls
FLC
App
FLC
Gls
EUR
App
EUR
Gls
OTH
App
OTH
Gls
1998/991 (0)1--------

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