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Carlo Ancelotti โ€“ The COOLEST Man In Football?

4 minute read Published April 18, 2024

Carlo Ancelotti, the man so cool they made him his very own emoji – ๐Ÿคจ


Ancelotti started his football career as a player for Parma. The young midfielder played three seasons for the north Italian club before moving on to the capital and Roma. During his 8 seasons at Roma he was part of a team that won a scudetto as well as three Coppa D’Italia. In 1985, he was made captain of the team by Sven Göran Erikson. 

In 1987, he moved on to AC Milan where he played for five seasons, winning two Scudetti, consecutive European Cups in 1989 and 1990 and a whole lot of domestic cups. 

Then, in 1992 he hung up his boots and laced up his brogues. Ancelotti first joined the Italian national team as an assistant coach for a few years before, finally, taking the top job at Reggiana, his hometown club. In his first season he brought them up to the Serie A.

Through his almost three decade long career, Ancelotti has managed the best and most prestigious clubs in the world. Juventus, AC Milan, Chelsea, PSG and Real Madrid to name a few. With those clubs he’s become the manager with the most Champions League wins ever in addition to countless league and domestic cup wins.

What sets Ancelotti apart from the likes of Guardiola, Mourinho or Benitez, though, is his coolness. It earned him the nickname Don Carlo.

Here’s an example for you: when arriving at the Everton training ground one day, Don Carlo came in by helicopter. The chopper landed on the pitch and was flown by his own pilot wife Mariann Barenna.

Relationships with players

Former and current players alike have nothing but good things to say about him. Even opposing managers have expressed their admiration for the man. Through his years as manager of the best clubs in the world, he’s managed the absolute best players. Cristiano, Zlatan and Pirlo to name a few. Here’s what Zlatan had to say about him after winning Ligue 1 together:

You are number one, I had great luck to have you as a coach, but you had it too to have me as a player. The main luck though was to get to know the person you are and that’s why I say to you that as a man you are even better than as a coach. 


He’s like a big bear, I can say. He’s a cute guy, such a sensitive person. He spoke with us every day.

Management Style

That’s his strength, both as a person and as a manager. He gets close to the players, rather than keep them at arms lengths distance.

Ancelotti may not be the most tactically astute manager. He’s no Guardiola or Arteta in that department. When he comes in, rather than applying his own system, his own tactics, he takes the players at his disposal and figures out the best way to deploy them all. He creates a great atmosphere, like taking the players out for ice cream when they win (he actually did at AC Milan).

He’s played all kinds of formations, three at the back, 4-4-2 and 4-2-3-1, to get the players at his disposal and get the best out of them. He likes to encourage players to be creative, to play with freedom. His kind of football relies on the players, not the system. 

I’ve never had a manager actually, in probably all my career, that asked the players and gave them a bit of responsibility.

John Terry

When Bellingham arrived at Real Madrid, he practically invented a new formation just to get him, Vini Jr and Rodrygo to fit together. A formation which doesn’t always include a striker.

The flashy, cool style isn’t just vanity either. It really helps him command the dressing rooms. It’s why he works so well with a squad like Real Madrid. Every player is a superstar, they’re used to getting their way and having all the attention. Ancelotti with his ways is able to get close to these players. And his charisma will shine as bright as his super star players.

Looking forward

The Italian still has another two years on his contract with Real Madrid. As with any manager, there have been periods where his position has been questioned. It does seem, however, as if the players are very happy with having Ancelotti at the helm.

After his incredible job as Leverkusen manager, Xabi Alonso has been rumoured to join all his past clubs. Liverpool wanted him to replace Klopp, Bayern to replace Tuchel. Now that he’s decided to stay with Leverkusen for another year there looks to be a path for him to take over when Ancelotti decides to leave.

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