As part of his role as PE Teacher at Idsall School, in Shifnal, Barrie Fisher worked with boys from the nearby FA School of Excellence based at Lilleshall and had the privilege of teaching the likes of Sol Campbell, Joe Cole, Carragher, Michael Owen and Trevor Sinclair.
And so, as he prepared to bid his school a fond farewell, Barrie, from Wolverhampton, received a special video message from Sky pundit Carragher, a letter from hometown club Blackpool FC and a personalised card from the England Rugby team.
Barrie said: "It was an emotional send-off and pretty overwhelming really. Over time, you forget occasionally how much you have done, what yo have achieved and who you have taught.
"So it was nice to be reminded of it and acknowledge a little bit, it was very special.
"It was lovely to hear from Jamie, wishing me all the best in my retirement and thanking me for impacting on the lives of a number of pupils. It's lovely seeing lads like Jamie, Michael and Trevor have a successful sporting career and then go into the media for a second career."
Barrie added: "My passion was always to teach PE and Idsall gave me the opportunity to do that, with pupils of all ability.
"In fact, working with some students of lower sporting ability has been more rewarding, seeing their enjoyment for PE come about. I got a lot of satisfaction from seeing students find a love for the subject.
"So I will always look back on my time at Idsall very fondly and will continue to follow the successes and developments of the school in the future with interest.
"I would like to wish all the members of staff and the pupils of the school every success and happiness in the future. I hope all will look back on their time at Idsall as positively as I do.
"As for myself, I have no fixed plans for retirement, I will just go with the flow."
Barrie started his teaching career, aged 22, and taught three generations of some families. Having turned 60 last week, he retired on Wednesday, having spent his entire teaching career at Idsall.
He has undertaken a variety of roles within the school during his time, including assistant Head of Year 11 and sixth form a well as Head of Boys PE and Head of Upper School.
He also qualified as an Advanced Skills Teacher with contributions to Shropshire advisory service for Physical Education.
Barrie works with Head of PE Phil Goodison and assistant head of PE, Joanne Broughton. Jo said: "We wanted to give Barrie a lovely send off and we were so grateful to Jamie, Blackpool and the England rugby team.
"We played messages from Barrie's family too and they got his bottom lip going a little bit.
"To have worked here so long is incredible. He's never known anything else."
"He will be greatly missed. He has a dry sense of humour and is so supportive. He's there for any child or member of staff.
"He will always stop what he's doing straight away and give his time, guidance and advice."