Robert Lee played with Alan Shearer at Newcastle for nearly six years and developed a close friendship with the striker who has become the Tyneside club's joint record goalscorer.
The 35-year-old has equalled Jackie Milburn's tally of 200 goals for the Magpies and here Lee provides BBC Sport with an insight into Shearer the player, prankster and person.
SHEARER - THE GOALSCORER
He's the best. He's been the best since the Premiership started. I don't think there is any question about that.
He's a dying breed of an old-fashioned British centre-forward. We seem to be going towards the more continental Thierry Henry-types who can score great goals.
But you couldn't name me anyone in the England squad at the moment who can replace him and that's been a real problem for them.
His goal record is second-to-none, he's aggressive, he's a leader and no-one holds the ball up better than him.
As we found out at Newcastle if you get crosses in for him, nine times out of 10 he will get on the end of them.
I look around at the centre-forwards today and I don't see anybody in the same type.
He could do everything, especially in his younger years. He was quick, he could head it or hold it, scored goals and when he got wide there's probably not a better crosser David Beckham apart.
Like all of us, age eventually catches up with you but he has adjusted his game accordingly.
He scores all types of goals from tap-ins to long range screamers. He takes great pleasure in goals and as long as the ball hits the back of the net he's happy.
SHEARER - THE MAN BEHIND THE MASK
Geordies are very much the same type of people. When he's with his family and friends he's a joker and, it may seem strange to say, but he's like Gazza.
He doesn't show it and has learnt to control himself in front of the media as he knows whatever he says will be interpreted in different ways by different parts of the media.
I don't like to say it but he's probably got a bit of intelligence. But you take him away and put him with his friends and family and they'll tell you he's a nightmare and a prankster.
He can take a joke and dish it out but when the serious stuff starts he wants people to do it correctly and wants the team to play well.
He's a very funny man would you believe - no-one does.
THE IDEAL COUPLE
Shearer struck up a powerful partnership with Ferdinand
When Alan arrived at the club we thought we had the best centre-forward at the time in Les Ferdinand, who got the player of the year award the season before.
Then all of a sudden we got Alan Shearer and in my opinion they are the best combination I have ever seen. They couldn't be handled.
They were both strong, quick, good in the air and both scored goals. They must have been a defender's nightmare.
I think the fact that Kevin Keegan left so shortly after signing Alan means we didn't really get to see the best of them.
The one season they spent together they scored about 50-odd goals and I would have liked to have seen them play together for a few more years.
SHEARER - THE MISSING MEDALS
He genuinely wants to win something for Newcastle which he'd love to do before he finishes playing but he's running out of time.
He's only got a couple more chances of silverware and if he's got one regret, like me, we haven't actually won anything at Newcastle when we should've done.
We were very close on a few occasions but we just didn't have that extra bit to get the silverware I think Alan deserved.
He won the Premiership with Blackburn and he's got enough personal awards to fill the Bank of England but it would have meant more to him to win any sort of cup or the Premiership with Newcastle.
I know a lot of big players do want to win medals and Alan is no different but he has the ambition of winning something with his hometown club because it's been so long since they won anything.
SHEARER - THE NEWCASTLE LEGEND
You go up to Newcastle and he is a legend already.
He had chances to join other clubs but he has stuck with the club he loves and wanted to play for and I think the Geordies appreciate that.
I would've thought the fact that he turned down Manchester United helped! You speak to him now and he doesn't regret it.
He's played for and given his best years to the club he will always support.