Pilgrims return for old-boy Bondz

Bondz N'Gala. Picture: Joe Pepler.
Bondz N'Gala. Picture: Joe Pepler.

THE lowest point in Plymouth’s history was observed at first hand by Bondz N’Gala.

The Pilgrims suffered two relegations, were served with a winding-up order and entered administration.

All this came during the towering defender’s 16-month stay in Devon.

He left in the summer of 2011, joining Yeovil on a free transfer before a spell at Stevenage last season.

Now N’Gala is on Pompey’s books, and tomorrow at Home Park will make his fifth successive start as he continues to impress.

Plymouth have been rescued by James Brent and put on a stable financial footing since the ex-West Ham trainee made the last of his 37 appearances.

But he still remembers the tough times he and others endured at his former club during some unhappy days.

He said: ‘I was at Plymouth for 16 months and it was a great experience down there, I really enjoyed it.

‘There were a few problems with administration. It was a tough time but we all stuck together down there and it turned out okay, thankfully.

‘It’s a big club and they had a similar situation at Pompey by all accounts.

‘But, as a player, when you are on the pitch you forget about everything else going on.

‘You just want to play football – it’s all you think about.

‘There were plenty of meetings, and people rallied around trying to help the club.

‘It was a strange time off the pitch but on the pitch you concentrate on football.

‘We weren’t getting paid so pretty much I was free to leave.

‘As a footballer you need to get paid.

‘You are earning a living and have bills to pay like everyone else, so I had to get on with it and went to Yeovil.

‘I played pretty regularly at Plymouth. It was a few years ago so I was a little bit younger but I really enjoyed myself.’

To date, N’Gala has made more appearances for Plymouth than any other club in what has been a much-travelled career so far.

At the age of 24, he has turned out for nine clubs – of which four were loan spells.

He made 35 appearances for the Glovers following his Pilgrims and after a season moved to Stevenage.

N’Gala turned out 28 times for the Boro, although ended the season on loan at Barnet before his release last summer.

He would later represent Pompey as a triallist in a pre-season game against the Hawks this summer, although was not retained.

Yet the defender returned and is hoping to continue being a first-team regular at Fratton Park

He added: ‘I had a decent time at Yeovil and learned a lot before moving to Stevenage.

‘I suppose I’ve had a few clubs for my age but I have learned a lot from various people. I’ve played games at all the clubs and hopefully that can continue.’