Former Burnley FC manager Stan Ternent and ex-Clarets captain Steve Davis have paid tribute to the 'top-class' Lenny Johnrose after a charity match raised almost £10,000 for the father-of-three, who recently made public his diagnosis with Motor Neurone Disease.
Praising the well-loved Burnley midfielder in the match programme ahead of the charity game for the Len Johnrose Trust, Ternent and Davis spoke in glowing terms of a "proper person", with Johnrose receiving a guard of honour on the pitch before Burnley Legends and Swansea Legends faced off at the Sir Tom Finney Stadium, home of Bamber Bridge FC, last weekend.
"He was top class," said Ternent, under whom Johnrose won promotion from the Second Division (now League One) to the First Division (now the Championship) in the 1999/00 season. "He was a proper man and a proper person with a real steel underneath.
"He always had a smile on his face and was always willing to listen and learn [and] was always respectful, but if he had something to say, he would say it and 99 times out of 100 he was right," added Ternent who manager Burnley in over 300 games. "We achieved a lot together and had some good times.
"With the response to what has happened, the way he has handled it and with everyone who [turned] out [at the charity match] today - that tells you all you need to know."
Having become a teacher at Lowerhouse Junior School since retiring from football in 2004, Johnrose was given a very special surprise as he walked onto the pitch ahead of the game, with 14 pupils and members of staff from Lowerhouse giving him a guard of honour.
Former Burnley captain, Steve Davis, said: "When we heard the news that came out, it was a shock to everyone. But it's been typical Lenny Johnrose the way he's handled what's happened; he's dealt with it how he played the game - taking everything head-on.
"There was nothing put in Lenny's way that he wouldn't try to overcome and it's the same with this condition," added Davis, who made over 300 appearances for the Turf Moor side himself. "He was a good player and a great character to have in the dressing room with a dry sense of humour.
"He's a great lad and it's testimony to him the effort the lads are putting in to get [to the game]; it shows what esteem he is held in."