Ahead of this Friday's trip to Northampton Town, we remember a tenacious midfielder who played for both clubs - Ben Sedgemore.
Benjamin Redwood Sedgemore was born in Wolverhampton back in 1975. Joining the Youth Team at nearby Birmingham City aged seventeen, he initially turned down an apprenticeship at the club in order to finish his secondary education.
After completing his A Levels, Ben subsequently took up the apprenticeship offer - although he made his league debut for Northampton Town whilst being on loan at Sixfields back in 1994.
Over the years that followed Ben spent a short spell at Peterborough in the middle of a three season stint with Mansfield Town. His second spell with Mansfield resulted in two almost ever-present seasons at Field Mill as he made sixty-two appearances and scored six goals.
Ben's performances caught the attention of Silkmen Manager Sammy McIlroy, who had been given extra funds to improve the squad by the board. The Northern Irishman signed Ben for £25,000 in Spring 1998 - alongside former Manchester City defender Rae Ingram and midfielder Kieron Durkan.
Ben made his Macclesfield Town debut in the home game against Shrewsbury on 21st March 1998, yet he would announce his arrival at the Moss Rose in emphatic style shortly after.
The Silkmen were in the midst of their push for a second promotion in as many seasons when high flying rivals Lincoln City visited the Moss in April 1998. The game itself was a cagey affair, with both teams equally matched and much of the play became limited to the midfield. Ben was in the thick of the action right from kick-off, involved in every attack whilst also gallantly performing his defensive duties.
The tense atmosphere bubbled over mid-way through the second half, when Lincoln keeper Barry Richardson seemed to kick Macc midfielder Martin McDonald whilst he was on the ground. Ben, along with almost everyone else on the pitch rushed over and tried to protect Martin, but he received a red card alongside Richardson. Macc went on to win the game in front of a fervent crowd, thanks to an 88th minute strike from Steve Wood.
After serving his ban Ben slotted straight back into the team, taking up his natural position on the right side of midfield. His enthusiasm and excellent turn of pace caused problems for many opposition teams, as well as cementing his spot in the hearts of the all the Silkmen fans.
In his final season with the club, Ben played in every game up to New Year - including a cameo appearance in goal. Tony Bullock was dismissed in the 17th minute away at Southend in November 2000 and Ben stepped up to cover. He held strong until late in the game - eventually letting in three as the hosts claimed maximum points at Roots Hall.
Opportunities dried up as we entered 2001, with Ben looking elsewhere for game time. He played his last game for Macc in the February before joining Lincoln - the team that he had made such an impact against three years earlier. He admitted to the Macc Express shortly after that he was a little nervous joining The Imps - worried that fans may remember his right hook to 'keeper Barry Richardson!
He needn't have worried. Ben experienced more success at Sincil Bank, playing over one hundred games for The Imps over three seasons. His time with Lincoln came to an end in 2004 and with Ben now approaching thirty, he dropped down the leagues in search of suitable opportunities.
After time with Canvey Island, Rushton and Diamonds, Havant and Waterlooville and Chelmsford, Ben joined Stamford in 2009 as he saw out his career before retiring in 2011.
Ben had taken the opportunity to broaden his education during his time as a player, knowing how precarious a footballers career can be. He gained both a degree in Psychology and Law, as well as a Masters in Finance, Marketing and Management during his playing days.
The likeable Brummie moved away from the professional game after retiring and is currently the CEO for World Corporate Games - an organisation that arranges multiple festivals for businesses around the world.