Few of the top players are more qualified in personal experience to teach young people about the harder aspects of life, the harsh environment, and ultimately make the class.
Marko Arnautovic, born and raised in Vienna, has made his mission to direct the next generation of knives, drugs and crime.
The 29-year-old "role model" takes a direct approach to the West Ham Player Project, launched on Wednesday.
Even though he admits that every child is impossible, Arnautovic hopes he can connect with many people.
The Austrian captain revealed: "I have many friends who are also soccer players. Some of them ended up in prison, some of them injured.
"I think of my group of friends, I am the only professional soccer player.
"I am still with them. I still respect them because they are also part of my life. "
"Even in prison?" He asked.
"I saw a lot of things in my life – they started selling drugs and selling this and that"
"Yes. They come out now. Some of them I don't have contact with but I hear positive things. They have family and work."
Even when looking at reward rewards – with Arnautovic now raising six points per week at West Ham and being adored by supporters – it's a challenge to convince the average teenager that they can also achieve great things.
"It's very difficult to put this into the minds of children, to everyone. There are many people on this planet.
"Everyone tries, we try, all the different clubs, the Premier League, the politicians.
"But you cannot change a child, woman, or man who has this in their heads. You can't get it out.
"I saw a lot of things in my life – they started selling drugs and selling these and that. I think they use this method because it's easy.
"But you got a hard sentence. You play with your life. "
One of the most serious problems currently among young people, and especially at the Arnautovic adoption house in London, is knife crime.
In his adolescence, the Austrian was no stranger to struggling out of trouble – but he considered the aircraft carrier a coward.
"It has changed a lot. Previously, back on the day when I was young, when you had some problems, you faced it with your hands.
"Nobody has a knife. Now it's changed.
"I think there are a lot of mafia films that show that maybe you are a tough guy when you put something in your pocket. But that is very dangerous.
"I only give advice to stay away from it, stay with your friends who are close to you.
"If one of the friends tries to change, talk to him. If he still doesn't change, stay away from him. "
While he has the love and support of his family, Arnautovic must oppose his father.
When doing a test for a job, No.7 of West Ham refused to write to force his father's hand to help him on his journey.
As a player who aspires to grow up and ‘bad boy 'when he arrived in England with Stoke, he only dreamed big.
Even though grass is not always greener.
Psychological stress – the center of attention, responsibility, your career is permanent – very big.
Marko is like everyone else, and states: "When you know the life of a soccer player, you will cry, believe me!
"We don't talk about money, you cry.
"Sometimes because there is so much pressure on you, you have to deal with this because a lot of players go & # 39; I'm fine, don't worry & # 39; – That's not true, because in games, it affects you.
"We also have feelings. If that is not possible [to give your all] maybe he has some personal problems, maybe he has some form problems – it could be a million things.
"When everything goes well in your personal life, your family, this and that, then it also runs in football. This is what it is.
"It's not easy to be a soccer player, but I'm not complaining. I am very happy to be one. "
You might feel there are two sides of the Premier League star scorer from a small town in Vienna.
But Arnautovic insisted and was off the pitch: "I am the same, I have not changed … I am an extraordinary man inside and out!"
And smile? "Sometimes…"
The Players & # 39; Project represents West Ham United's commitment and vision to use the power of sports to motivate, educate and inspire people in the local community. The first team players will help drive core community programs that provide a life-changing experience throughout the season.