Silvio Berlusconi says Emmanuel Macron is a 'nice lad with a good-looking mum'

Former Italian PM makes apparent jibe about Macron's older wife - despite Berlusconi himself being nearly half a century older than his current girlfriend

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The Independent Online

Silvio Berlusconi has said Emmanuel Macron is a “nice lad with a good-looking mum”, seemingly mocking the newly elected President of France.

The former Italian Prime Minister, 80, was apparently referring to Mr Macron’s marriage to Brigitte Trogneux, who is 24 years his senior. 

Mr Macron, 39, first met Ms Trogneux, 64, when he was a teenager and she his drama teacher. They married in 2007 and their relationship has attracted substantial international attention, including that of Mr Berlusconi. 

Speaking at a campaign event for a Forza Italia mayoral candidate in the northern town of Monza, Mr Berlusconi said the newly elected President was a “nice 39-year-old lad,” the Telegraph reported.

He continued: “[He has] good work experience under him and most of all with a good looking mom who has carried him under her arm when he was still a child." 

But observers pointed out that Mr Berlusconi is himself involved in a relationship with someone 49 years younger than him. 

His partner, Francesca Pascale, is just 31 years old.

Mr Berlusconi, a billionaire tycoon whose populist style has drawn comparisons to Donald Trump, is renowned for his gaffes. He was banned from public office after being convicted of tax fraud in 2013. 

In contrast, Mr Macron is France's youngest ever post-war President. He beat far right leader Marine Le Pen to the country's most senior political post in a tense election, vowing to modernise France. 

He must now deal with a looming terrorist threat, mass unemployment and a strong nationalist challenge.