Derby days are always a special occasion and Macclesfield v Chester is no exception.
On Easter Monday we welcome our Cheshire rivals to the Moss Rose with both teams fighting for three points that could make all the difference to either team’s fortunes at the end of the season.
However, over the years, a number of players have crossed the divide between the two clubs. So, we looked into the Macclesfield Town archive’s and found five players that have played for both the Silkmen and Chester.
Kevin McIntyre is well respected for his achievements on both sides of the divide.
McIntyre joined Chester on a free transfer in 2002 and quickly became one of the first names on the team-sheet for the Blues. He went on to make 90 appearances for the club before he was deemed surplus to requirements in 2004 but Chester’s loss was the Silkmen’s gain.
The defender made the switch to the Moss Rose and he came back to haunt his former employers by scoring twice in wins against the Blues. The signing proved to be a touch of genius by then manager Brian Horton, as McIntyre helped the club maintain its Football League status on the last day of the 2004/05 season. He then went on to play over 100 games for the Silkmen before leaving the club in 2008.
He eventually returned to Chester in the 2013/14 season making 29 appearances at the Deva Stadium.
It was with Chester where Chris Holroyd made his name. The prolific striker started off as a trainee with the Blues and he quickly caught the attention of clubs sitting towards the top of the football pyramid.
He transferred to Cambridge in 2008 and after slowly rose up the leagues with the likes of Brighton, Bury, Rotherham, and Preston.
Holroyd first came to the Moss Rose in a loan deal in the 2012/13 season and he soon made the move permanent at the beginning of the next season. The striker was an ever-present in the Silkmen squad and racked up over 130 appearances for the club, including a performance at Wembley for the FA Trophy final.
He made the switch to Chester’s bitter rivals Wrexham, last summer.
Turnbull is another Macclesfield centurion. The midfielder spent three years at the Moss Rose and went on to make 104 league appearances, scoring 9 goals in that time.
He eventually left the club for Barrow at the start of the 2016/17 season but joined Chester at the beginning of this season after impressing in his time at Holker Street.
He’s played 17 times this season for the Blues. However, he is currently on loan with Stockport County and won’t be returning to Moss Rose in this fixture.
James is something of a cult-hero at Chester. The central midfielder represented the club over the course of two seasons and was a key cog in the Blues side.
After his spell at the Deva came to an end, he made the switch to Halifax but only spent a year at the Shay as John Askey brought him to Moss Rose.
James went on to play 34 games for the Silkmen and played his part in some famous games for the Silkmen such as our 1-0 victory over Walsall in the FA Cup.
He spent just 1 year at the club before moving back to Chester at the start of this season. However, he is currently on loan at Barrow as he tries to help them beat the drop.
The winger is lighting up the National League this season and in some style.
Durrell spent a season with the Blues, and he was an ever-present in their side throughout the whole campaign. He managed to grab eight goals for Chester in his solitary campaign at the club before his release at the end of the season.
With some players heading to Chester from Moss Rose, Durrell took the opposite route and hasn’t looked back since. Once again, an ever-present in the side, he’s racked up thirty appearances so far this season, scoring eight goals (equalling his tally as a Chester player).
The quality of some of his goals this season speak for themselves and he’s formed a formidable partnership with the front-line.
He’ll be hoping to get one over his former club on Easter Monday.
By Andrew Gate.