Five of the best player-manager bromances

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Football News

Southampton's on-loan star Eljero Elia has made headlines for his glowing tribute to manager Ronald Koeman. Elia went as far as to claim that he would "run through brick walls" and "walk through fire" for his Dutch compatriot.

Now all of this sounds a little too much like something out of a Bruno Mars love song for our liking - so we have put together a compilation of five other players and managers who loved each other a little bit too much.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Jose Mourinho

The Swedish star played under Mourinho at Inter Milan during the 2008/09 season. Inter won the Serie A title and Ibrahimović finished the season as top scorer.

Ibrahimović claimed in his autobiography 'I am Zlatan Ibrahimović' that he was "willing to die" for Mourinho. No wonder he endured an unhappy relationship with Mourinho's fierce rival, Pep Guardiola, during his time at Barcelona!

Emmanuel Adebayor and Tim Sherwood

Few managers have got the best out of the Togolese target man during a career featuring spells at Arsenal, Manchester City, Real Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur. At the start of the 2013/14 season, then Spurs manager André Villas Boas made Adebayor train with the youth team.

Tim Sherwood brought him back into the fold when he took over in December 2013 and the striker finished as Tottenham's top scorer for the season. He signed off his and Sherwood's bromance with a cringeworthy salute after scoring against Sunderland in April, shortly before the latter's departure from the club.

Luis Suarez and Kenny Dalglish

Dalglish brought the controversial Uruguayan to Liverpool on deadline day of the 2011 January transfer window. A little under a year later, Suàrez was given an eight-game ban by the FA amid allegations that he racially abused Manchester United's Patrice Evra. Despite an independent tribunal finding that Suàrez's statement was inconsistent with video evidence, Dalglish stood by him.

He went on to present the striker with the European Golden Shoe trophy in October - an honour which Suàrez shared with Cristiano Ronaldo.

Samuel Eto'o and Jose Mourinho

This one is a rather more complicated bromance than most. Eto'o vowed whilst at Barcelona that he would never play for any club under the Portuguese manager. However, he ended up doing so twice - at Inter Milan and Chelsea. Eto'o even took a massive paycut to join the latter from Anzhi Makhachkala - citing Mourinho as a reason for the move.

However, Eto'o did not appear too happy with the Chelsea manager being caught suggesting that he was three years older than his then age of 32.

Mario Balotelli and Roberto Mancini

No bromance article would be complete without this pair. Mancini managed Balotelli at Inter Milan from 2007-2009 and Manchester City from 2010-2013. They fought like a married couple and it even got physical during a City training session! However, Mancini stood by Balotelli through misdemeanours galore and the Italian striker stated in an interview with TIME Magazine that his compatriot was "like a father" to him.

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Kenny Dalglish
Jose Mourinho
Emmanuel Adebayor
Luis Suarez
Mario Balotelli

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