The ‘record man’ has done it again.
Carlo Ancelotti and his trademark cocked eyebrow continued a late career surge up the list of all-time great managers with Sunday’s Champions League upset of Liverpool.
The 1-0 win in Paris was the Italian’s fourth Champions League triumph – the first man to achieve that feat.
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Ancelotti led AC Milan to European glory in 2003 and 2007 and also won the trophy in a previous stint with Madrid in 2014.
“I cannot believe it. I am the record man,” Ancelotti said.
Ancelotti re-established his reputation as one of the world’s top managers this season, becoming the first to win titles in Europe’s five major leagues while also guiding Madrid past a trio of heavyweights in Paris Saint-Germain, Chelsea and Manchester City in the Champions League knockout stages to reach the final.
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Vinicius fires Madrid in front
Nothing quite sums up the 62-year-old Italian more than his reaction to a match-clinching goal scored in extra time when Everton, the team from the blue half of Merseyside which Ancelotti was managing last season, beat Tottenham 5-4 in the FA Cup in 2021.
While Everton’s fans, players and coaching staff lost their minds inside a rocking Goodison Park, Ancelotti simply blew on his cup of tea and turned around to return to his seat in the dugout.
“Football is the most important of the less important things in the world,” Ancelotti once said, and he gives off the carefree aura of someone determined not to be weighed down by the pressure of high end football management.
“The most famous eyebrow in world football,” Max Rushden said on Stan Sport.
But the joyous scenes at Stade de France seemed impossible after losing to Moldovan minnows in the group stages.
“For Carlo Ancelotti it is a beautiful moment,” former Socceroos captain Craig Foster said.
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“Where they started this season to where they have finished is a tribute to a brilliant, brilliant manager.
“Because we saw them lose to Sheriff Tiraspol and they were a shade of this team that has finished the season. Won their 35th La Liga and now won their 14th Champions League. What he built this season is testament to brilliant, brilliant work.
“Getting the best out of everyone, bringing Vinicius Junior up, Rodrygo is only 19 and is a star of the future, of course (Eduardo) Camavinga, his use.
“PSG, Chelsea, Manchester City – they went on to win all those games from behind when Camavinga came on, he’s still so young and he is the future of the club. He continues to build this and it’s something quite amazing.
“Amazingly at the start of the season he wasn’t even the first choice. They weren’t sure if he was going to stay after the season. He’s just won the double. Amazing.”
Ancelotti is unruffled, unflappable, so nonchalant he almost appears uncaring, transmitting calm all around him with his seen it all, done it all approach.
“It was a difficult game. We suffered a lot more in the first half, but in the second half at the the end with all the games we played I think we deserved to win this competition,” Ancelotti said.
“We are really happy, and I cannot say more. When I came here, I found as usual a fantastic squad with a lot of quality and strong mental character.
“We passed through really difficult games, the supporters helped us a lot, I am so happy.”
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