PAOLO Maldini, Christian Vieri and Ronaldo (the Brazilian one) were among the top players who passed on tips to the King’s College footballers who took part in a tour to Italy 20 years ago.

The King’s team took on the youngsters of AC Milan and Inter Milan as part of the tour in the autumn of 2000, which also saw them watch the Milan clubs’ senior sides train, and meet some of the star players after a 2-2 draw between Inter and Juventus.

This was the result of hard work put in by Justin Talbot, who had been diagnosed with leukaemia three years previously and had to undergo intensive treatment.

While recuperating, he was granted a wish by the Starlight Foundation charity and, as a fanatical AC Milan supporter, he chose to go see them play, and the contacts made on that trip enabled him to organise the tour in 2000.