After almost a year together, Real Madrid goalkeeper and fresh UEFA Champions League winner Thibaut Courtois on Saturday asked for the hand of his partner — Israeli model Mishel Gerzig.
Cruising on a yacht against picturesque scenery, Courtois, 30, got down on one knee and popped the question to Gerzig, 25, who couldn't hold back her tears as she said "yes".
Courtois's proposal came just a week after he clenched the 2022 UEFA Champions League title in Paris with the Spanish champions, beating an adamant Liverpool side.
Courtois was named the final's man of the match after putting up a brilliant performance with no less than nine saves, helping Los Blancos to a record-extending 14th European title with a modest 1-0 victory.
The couple met through mutual friends on Instagram a year and a half ago. Courtois initiated the correspondence with Gerzig and the two kept in touch until she arrived in Madrid for a photoshoot in April 2022.
By the end of July, Courtois had already asked the Israeli model to move in with him, and the couple has been starring in major sports and gossip sections around the globe ever since.
The two have also gotten matching tattoos — Courtois has the words "I love you" in Hebrew in Gerzig's handwriting tattooed on his left bicep, while she has the words "Te Amo" in his handwriting tattooed on her.
The Belgian shot-stopper was married before and has two children from his previous marriage, Adriana, 7, and Nicolas, 5.
According to Gerzig, their relationship came with a price since she has been the target of antisemitic and anti-Israel abuse ever since.
She said that ever since the two started seeing each other, the model has been accused of being a "child killer" while others litter her social media with the words "free Palestine".
"People don't care about you as a human being. If you are from Israel it's over; it doesn't matter if you are good or bad, they instantly hate you and threaten you only for being Israeli," she said.
However, Gerzig notes that she also gets many supporting comments too. "I received a message from an Arab Real Madrid fan from Lebanon who said 'we love you, and we love Israel'," she said.
"In England, when Real Madrid played Manchester City in the [Champions League] semi-finals, an Arab fan approached me and said, 'I love you guys, and Israel is the best.' It was really heartwarming."