Mason Mount spent several years looking up to David Luiz during their time together at Chelsea.
But today at Wembley he hopes to be looking down on him from the heights of becoming an FA Cup winner for the first time in his young career.
Mount admits he used to be starstruck whenever he saw Brazilian international Luiz as he came through the academy at Stamford Bridge.
The two became friends and Luiz would offer the teenage wannabe advice that he hoped would help him make it to the top.
Luiz might have since left the Blues to join bitter London rivals Arsenal – but the two have remained good friends.
Mount, 21, has a lot to thank Luiz for but he won’t be doing his old team-mate any favours tonight when they find themselves on opposite sides in English football’s showpiece final.
Mount said: “He was always brilliant with the younger boys coming through the academy. I’ve a picture with him when I was probably about 13.
“He would come over and watch us play and train and he was always brilliant with the younger boys. I always looked up to him.
“You know David, he’s a very jokey character. He would come over and have a laugh with the younger boys. For us, seeing him come over, it was obviously someone we all look up to.
“All I wanted to do was go and say hello and speak with him and have a laugh with him. That’s what he did. It makes you feel very comfortable being around the first team players.
“He has loads of experience so for me, as a younger player, speaking with him and being around him I learned so much. I get on very well with David.
“It was a memory that will stick with me for a long time. I was a bit starstruck and nervous.”
Luiz didn’t hang around long enough to witness and experience Mount’s rapid rise to becoming a Blues superstar and England international.
Luiz swapped Stamford Bridge for the Emirates last summer when Frank Lampard took over as boss – and since then Mount has taken the…