Carlo Ancelotti admits he tried to lure Steven Gerrard from Liverpool during his time in charge of Italian giants Milan.
Having progressed through the youth ranks at Anfield and making his debut in 1998, the midfielder has been a mainstay of the Reds side and captain since October 2003. During this time he has played a key role in their success, including two FA Cups, three League Cups, a FA Community Shield, one UEFA Cup and one UEFA Super Cup.
Above all this, of course, he skippered the side to UEFA Champions League glory in 2005, when the Merseyside giants came back from 3-0 down to beat Milan in a penalty shootout. In charge of the San Siro outfit that night in Istanbul was Ancelotti, and the 55-year-old coach admits he wanted to lure the England international to Serie A.
“He’s one of the players I would have loved to have coached,” he told The Sun. “And I thought about him so many times in the past when I was at Milan. But it was impossible because he was very much linked with Liverpool. We had sounded him out but Gerrard’s bond with Liverpool was unbreakable. I don’t remember exactly what year it was but we did try.”
Ancelotti will come face-to-face with the 34-year-old again on Wednesday night, when he takes his Real Madrid side to Anfield in the Champions League. Los Blancos, the reigning European champions, have won their first two games in Group B, whilst their midweek opponents lost at Basle after opening the campaign with three points against Ludogorets.
Should Gerrard have moved to Italy or Spain during the course of his career? Let us know what you think by joining in with the discussion below.