Carlo Ancelotti and Jurgen Klopp are two of the most prominent and distinguished managers of this generation. One has won the league title in all 5 Big Leagues of Europe, and the other has done wonders by rejuvenating clubs like Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool when they were struggling to move up in the order.
Aside from being Champions League winners, Bundesliga winners, and Premier League winners, they both are or have been managers of Merseyside clubs. Klopp of the red team, and Ancelotti of the blue team.
Although the clubs and their supporters are hell-bent on destroying each other, these two managers do not share the same animosity. In fact, despite facing each other in tough games like the Champions League finals, these two are quite friendly with each other.
Both were residing in Merseyside when the pandemic struck.
Living in Liverpool during the days of Covid-19 was not easy, and this led to the two top-class managers communicating with each other a bit more. They learnt that they shared a lot in common, and even started sharing ideas, thoughts, pleasantries, and gifts with each other.
In an interview yesterday, which was conducted for the CL Round-of-16 tie that will be played between the two managers, Ancelotti said –
We have a really good relationship with each other. We spent a year and a half together in Liverpool during a pandemic…We wrote together and exchanged gifts. He is a very amiable man.
One of these gifts came just before the aforementioned Champions League final, by when Ancelotti had long left Everton behind for the greener and richer pastures of Spain’s Real Madrid.
To reminisce about the days of the past, Klopp gave Ancelotti a token of appreciation, and it was an incredibly thoughtful one too.
Ancelotti is well known as the manager who smokes. In celebratory photos, of which he has a lot, you can see him with a cigar in his mouth. When not celebrating, you can see him with a normal cigarette strolling about his day.
Klopp, noticing this habit of Ancelotti’s, gave him a gift that would revolutionize his experience of the old tobacco smoke – an e-cigarette.
Questions naturally come up about what type of e-cigarette it was. It could be a classic one or a “vape” that teenagers smoke that comes in all types of fruity flavours.
Knowing how classy Ancelotti is, I doubt we would see him cutting about with an RGB Mango-flavoured vape in his hand, but it would be cool nonetheless.
With this incredibly thoughtful gift, journalists were understandably curious about what return gift Ancelotti has in store for Klopp. To this, he replied, “He will get one when we meet in Madrid.”
Is this “gift” a stunning defeat for the Reds at the Bernabeu, or is he spending time to deliberate an equally thoughtful gift for Klopp? We may not know till they meet in Madrid.
As unexpected as this bromance between these two legends is, it is undeniably delightful, and we can’t wait to see how it develops.