Get to know this weekend’s opponents a little better…
Co-Chairs: Bill Waterson, Lawrence Looney
Nickname: The Robins, Alty Founded: 1891
Stadium: Moss Lane Opened: 1910 Capacity: 6,085
THE MANAGER: Phil Parkinson
Phil Parkinson has been with Altrincham since 2017, being appointed as first-team manager on the 28th of April of this year. Parkinson joined Alty merely the day before the club was relegated to the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League, in the last game of the 2016/17 season. As a player, Parkinson came through the youth ranks at Crewe Alexandra and Reading before a year at Port Vale. He then moved on to turn out for Nantwich as a player, who he’d manage in the future. During his time at The Dabbers, Parkinson revolutionised the club turning them from a relegation-threatened club to promotion contenders as well as taking them to the FA Trophy semi-finals in 2016. At Alty, Parkinson has successfully led the club to a Northern Premier League win in the 2017/18 season, as well as a promotion to the National League through the play-offs.
CLUB CAPTAIN: Jake Moult
Jake Moult initially joined The Robins in 2012 as part of a 93-day-loan agreement, but due to his impressive performances at Alty he ended up being offered a permanent deal with the club. The 31-year-old midfielder has been a key presence for Altrincham and his experience has been beneficial to the club in different aspects – as Moult has filled in at several positions, even as caretaker manager for a brief period. The captain is a fan favourite at Alty, with one of his most memorable moments for Altrincham being a 30-yard lob in 2015 scored against Colchester in an FA Cup fixture.
MEET THE OPPOSITION: Altrincham Football Club was initially formed by a Sunday School around 1891 as Rigby Memorial Club. The club finally developed into Altrincham in 1903, after moving to Pollitt’s Field before finally settling in at Moss Lane in 1910. Altrincham have a long history within nonleague football having played in non-league ever since being formed. The Robins were founding members of the Alliance Premier League and secured the championship in their first season at the level. Alty were also founding members of the Northern Premier League in 1968. The Robins are famous for their FA Cup runs, as non-league’s best performing club in the cup. they hold the record for knocking out more Football League sides than any other club that has spent their entire history playing non-league football, featuring seventeen victories against Football League clubs.
It is only early in the National League season for Altrincham, yet they are still expecting their first win for the competitive season. The Robins drew to Eastleigh away from home in their last outing, and they were also bested by Notts County in a 3-1 loss. Their season opener at home saw Alty draw to recently promoted Weymouth.
THE KEY MEN
Yusifu Ceesay had his 2019/20 season cut short due to successive hamstring injuries which interrupted his loan spell, but has now joined the club permanently and his physicality is a powerful tool for The Robins. The advanced playmaker Josh Hancock’s abilities are also a threat, as Hancock is a regular in competing for the top scorer position at Alty as well as being capable of providing the goal-scoring chances. Forward Tom Peers earned himself the reputation of a super-sub often coming off the bench to score, but Jordan Hulme’s departure to Fylde gives him the chance to shine from the start. Right Back Shaun Densmore has accumulated 377 appearances for Alty and has proved to be reliable in defence, and hard-hitting tough midfielder Sean Williams has also shown to be a key player for The Robins due to his commitment to each game.
ONES TO WATCH:
Shaun Densmore (DF, English, 31) Densmore has only ever worn the Altrincham as a senior, ever since joining the club in 2008. He has demonstrated versatility for the club having played as a right-back, left-back and midfielder. He’s experienced four relegations and three promotions as an Alty player, but has stuck with the club and proved to be a valuable member. He is an Everton academy product.
Sean Williams (MF, English, 28) Williams joined Alty for a second spell prior to the 2018/19 season, after already having represented the club for the 2014/15 season. The 28-year-old midfielder has earned himself a reputation of leaving it all out in the field, as a tough hard-working player. Williams has made over 100 appearances for Alty.
Josh Hancock (MF, English, 30) The creative Josh Hancock joined Altrincham after being brought into the club by manager Phil Parkinson, who had also managed him at Nantwich. Since joining prior to the 2017/18 season, Hancock scored four goals in the first six games he played and was a runner up to Jordan Hulme as the club’s top scorer. Hancock spent his youth days with Nantwich before representing Winsford United, Witton Albion, AFC Telford, Salford, and Nantwich again.
Yusifu Ceesay (MF, Gambian, 27) Yusifu Ceesay first joined Altrincham for a loan spell in the 2018/19 season, before re-joining again on another loan for the 2019/20 season. Ceesay stands out for Altrincham due to his strong physicality. He stands at about 6ft 2in and possesses a large amount of strength which he makes use of in his runs on the ball. He was a goal scorer in Alty’s last outing against Eastleigh. Starting his career at Sporting Khalsa, Ceesay then joined Alvechurch where he impressed, earning a move to League One side Blackpool. He experienced loan spells with Nuneaton, Boston, and Telford before finally moving on to Altrincham.
Tom Peers (FW, English, 24) Tom Peers has been with The Robins since 2017, and in his first season as a player for Alty, he scored 11 times. Peers came through the youth ranks at Chester City all the way to the first team, and experienced loans with 1874 Northwich, Marine, Salford City and Hednesford before joining AFC Telford. He also represented Warrington and Droylsden before his last experience prior to Alty with Nantwich. Peers has scored 13 goals for Alty and provides an option for The Robins at both striker, and on the wings.