Words by Joe Ward
With exactly two weeks to go until Jake Moult's testimonial, we are delighted to announce a third cohort of star-studded names that will be attending The J.Davidson Stadium to pay homage to one of the great servants of Alty's recent history.
Previously, the club announced that seven recruits from the successful Lee Sinnott years will be out in force on Sunday, April 30th, with Stuart Coburn, Damian Reeves, Scott Leather, Nicky Clee, James Lawrie, Sam Heathcote and Adam Griffin all lined up to play.
Additionally, we also previously reported that six of the 'Magnificent Seven' will be attending the testimonial, with Shaun Densmore, Josh Hancock, Andy White, Tom Hannigan and, of course, Jake Moult himself all set to step out at The J.Davidson Stadium once again.
Now, four more stellar names, all with vast Football League experience, can be added to the list, with Dean Furman, Ritchie Sutton, Ryan Shotton and Louis Moult all confirmed to attend.
The four have all shared the pitch with Jake, some at Alty and others at different clubs, but they'll be back to share it again for an Altrincham Xl versus a Jake Moult Xl, kicking off at 1pm on the 30th, with tickets for this not-to-be-missed testimonial costing just £10 for adults and £5 for under-16s.
Here's an in-depth look at the latest quartet to be booked in for Jake's big day:
The South African began his footballing career at just nine years of age as a youth team player at Chelsea. It was here, under the watchful eye of a young Brendan Rodgers, that Dean developed into a disciplined holding midfielder - a trait that he believes helped him rack up a very impressive 58 caps for his country, spending a chunk of it as captain.
However, he was released by the Blues at 18 and signed for the light blue of Glasgow Rangers. He only ever made one Rangers first-team appearance when he was introduced as a substitute during a 3-1 league win against Dundee United.
He did, however, make quite an impact for Rangers at junior level, chipping in with one of the goals in a memorable 5-0 win over Celtic in the 2007 Youth Cup final.
Following three years in Scotland, the midfielder left to carve out a respectable career in the English lower leagues for the likes of Bradford City, Oldham Athletic, Doncaster Rovers and Carlisle United.
In 2012, he made his international debut in a 1-0 defeat to Brazil, where the then-Oldham player faced the likes of Neymar, Dani Alves and David Luiz.
After spending five years at SuperSports United in South Africa, Furman returned to England when he signed for League Two side Carlisle. A season here was followed by one at Altrincham, where he made several appearances for the Robins.
The seasoned midfielder brought a wealth of experience with him to The J.Davidson Stadium, often sitting in front of the back four, dictating the game with his intelligent play.
At the age of 34, he's still going strong and currently plays in the Pitching In Northern Premier League for Warrington Rylands.
Ritchie's early career was spent at Crewe Alexandra, but, after struggling to make the first team, he was sent out on several loan spells with non-League clubs, picking up valuable experience as a youngster.
In 2007, after being released by Crewe, he returned to the non-League scene, enjoying time at Stafford Rangers, Northwich Victoria, Halifax Town and Nantwich Town, whom he recently managed, before earning another opportunity in the EFL.
He signed for Port Vale in 2010 before making the switch to Mansfield Town the following year. He made over 150 appearances for the Stags as part of the squad that were promoted to League Two. It was at Mansfield that Sutton was introduced to Jake Moult's brother, Louis, when he joined on loan at Field Mill in 2011.
Ritchie's accomplishments grew after he joined Tranmere Rovers, where he was part of yet another promotion to the Football League. And just five years later, following a loan at Barrow and two seasons at Morecambe, the defender arrived at The J.Davidson Stadium.
Manager Phil Parkinson believed Ritchie would be a good mentor for the younger players in his recently-promoted side and signed him on a two-year deal. He played 18 games during the 2020-21 season, scoring in a 1-1 draw away to Hartlepool United in the league.
He enjoyed a short but successful tenure at Moss Lane, showcasing his ability to play as an intelligent and physical central defender.
He left Alty at the end of last season and moved back to Nantwich, most recently as a manager before leaving the club in February.
Those of you who were around during the 2007-08 campaign will remember Ryan for his incredible versatility, with an ability to play as a centre-back, full-back or forward, scoring a total of five goals in his first and only season for the Robins.
At the time, the youngster had just signed a professional contract at Stoke City, and he joined Alty on loan to gain first-team experience. And what an experience it was - so much so that he won the Supporters' Player of the Year award for his impressive performances at The J.Davidson Stadium.
Therefore, it was no surprise to see him scale the heights of the EFL, Premier League and even European football throughout his career.
The defender, who was often used as a makeshift centre forward due to his tall frame, went on to play for the likes of Wigan Athletic, Derby County, Birmingham City and Middlesbrough, to name just a few.
He played briefly for Leek Town before emigrating to Australia to join A-League club Melbourne Victory in 2020. However, just a year later, he was back in England joining Hanley Town, where he now contributes as a player-manager.
Born in Stoke-on-Trent, Ryan and Jake played together for years in the same county team, and they'll be linking up once again when he returns to Altrincham on the 30th.
The younger brother of Jake Moult, Louis made a name for himself as a prolific goal scorer in Stoke City's Academy and reserve side during his early career.
The striker's talent and hard work showed when in 2010 he made his Premier League debut as a substitute during a 1-1 draw at Burnley. After this, however, Louis struggled to gain a permanent place in the squad and was sent out on loan to Bradford City, Mansfield Town, Accrington Stanley and Alfreton Town.
In 2011, Louis made his debut for the Stags against Alfreton in the FA Trophy. It just so happened that his brother Jake also played in that match for the visitors. The tie ended in a 1-1 draw, forcing a third-round replay at the Impact Arena.
The Moults linked back up just a year later when Louis joined Alfreton on a one-month loan.
Following a second spell at Mansfield, Louis signed a one-year contract with Northampton Town. He subsequently played non-League football for Nuneaton Town and Wrexham before moving to Scottish Premier League side Motherwell in 2015.
Most notably, Louis won Scottish Premiership Player of the Month for September 2017 and in October of the same year scored both goals in a historic 2-0 win over Rangers in the semi-final of the Scottish League Cup.
He then joined Preston North End and Burton Albion before returning to Motherwell on loan in 2022. Unfortunately, due to injury, Louis had his loan terminated in January 2023, returning to the Brewers where he still plays now.
Speaking to the Daily Record in 2017, Jake Moult said: "We’re really close and we speak every couple of days. The entire family are proud of what he’s achieved."
Now, it's time for Louis to return the favour and honour his big brother at the testimonial on what promises to be a fantastic afternoon for the Moult family.
Don't forget to look out for further announcements of players over the coming weeks on the club's website and our social media channels. In the meantime, why not book your place at what is sure to be a memorable afternoon by buying your tickets here.