A former schoolmate of ‘Jihadi John’ said he was always picked last for the football team because of his short stature – and played a game where he pinched schoolgirls’ bottoms.
The ISIS executioner was this week unmasked as Londoner Mohammed Emwazi.
Old pals said he was one of the smallest in his class but “knew how to look after himself” and but never had a girlfriend because he lived in fear of his strict father.
A friend who studied alongside him at Quintin Kynaston Community Academy in North London, said he was shocked that the “proper normal” boy turned into a “madman”.
The 27-year-old said: “We used to play a little game called ‘Squeeze and Breeze’. We used to squeeze people’s bums and then run off.
“It was just a kiddies game.
“It started off at school, and then on the street.
“We were only in year seven. It was just fun. It was just girls in the class, and the older girls too.
“He never had no girlfriends – he was only focussed on work and football.
“He used to be scared of his dad so most of the time he was focussed on work or football. The only playing he did was football.
“That was my good friend – it’s crazy. He was my little friend.
“He was cool. I used to play football with him. He was alright.
“People used to trouble him because he was small, he used to be one of the shortest, but he had a little temper – he knew how to look after himself.
“It’s not that he was getting picked on, but in the football team, where he was the smallest, he wouldn’t get picked, so I used to pick him to make him feel comfortable.
“I used to make sure I picked him so he got a bit more recognised.”
The shocked former friend knew him for five years from the age of 11, and added: “He was my good friend man, it’s crazy.
“We used to play football and I used to copy his work and that.
“He used to do my work for me – I can’t believe this is the same guy.
“All through school he was cool – he was proper normal – there was no signs of a madman or nothing.
“He was proper cool, proper proper cool.”
The former school friend said just a week ago he was searching on Facebook for Mohammed, in a bid to reconnect with his once-close friend.
The pair lost touch about a year after they finished school.
He added: “I can’t believe this is going on.
“That morning when I found out I had goosebumps.
“I downloaded Facebook on my app the other night and I was looking for all my old school friends. He was the only person that I couldn’t find.
“And then someone has told me that this guy is the terrorist so it was really hard to take in.
“I read about someone saying he used to be racist and talk about Hitler and he never used to be like that at all. He was a normal guy.”