Yesterday was another masterclass from the manager in front of the media.
He held court from the moment the questioning started, when someone tried to put him on the spot over the league race. When he asked rhetorically if prizes were handed out in October you could have heard a pin drop in that room.
He had set his stall out early.
It was a warning for the rest to ignore at their peril.
The questions were not quite so stupid from then on in. He had made his point and they got the message.
Ange was pure class. He was asked about refereeing by people chasing a quick headline.
He knew exactly what to say; “I’m focussed on our own games.” He pays no heed to the white noise in the background. He was asked about the team and how they have bonded. He passed all the credit on to the players. He is clearly a superb man manager.
He discussed transfers, whilst respecting other clubs and the integrity of the squad at this one.
He knows how to answer the media’s questions now, even the loaded ones.
The press is fond of telling us that Gerrard “oozes class”.
The only thing oozing is their slobbering all over him.
Ange epitomises it without any of his rival’s arrogance or spite. When he gets frustrated it’s because he genuinely can’t believe how dumb these people are; for the rest of the time he acts with the utmost professionalism and respect.
Ange may be a tough customer, but he has a real decency and warmth to him which is not evident across the city.
I thought my friend Chris Cominato summed it up last night in his article when he said that Ange manages to convey the impression that he gets this club and its values without the smugness or fakery of Rodgers; that’s absolutely on the nose.
Ange is a good guy. And for a long time the accepted wisdom has been that they aren’t winners. This is just another thing he’s going to have to disprove, as he has many times in his career already. I suspect that this will be his sweetest triumph yet.