World Cup 2018: Club-mates who will be rivals in the Group Stage
The FIFA World Cup is only a few days away and football fans from around the world are all looked forward to the much-awaited fiesta. This is a period where football fans keep their club loyalties aside, put on their national jerseys and passionately cheer their favourite team participating in the tournament. There's nothing like an international tournament in football as it induced a carnival type atmosphere in the nations participating.
However, the international tournament has a habit of turning friends into foes and that includes the stars on the pitch. Football is a club-driven sport where players represent clubs from all around the world for the best part of the year and play with their national teammates only during international assignments. When they do, players playing for the same club often clash against each other. This ends up becoming a tasty confrontation between friends who spend most of the year together. When the tournament kicks off in Russia in few days time, these club friendships will have to be put aside as the players will battle it out to make their countries proud.
In this article, we take a look at club teammates who will go head to head in the league phase of the World Cup in Russia.
Cristiano Ronaldo vs Sergio Ramos and Dani Carvajal (Portugal vs Spain)
The match between Portugal and Spain will be one of the most hotly contested matches of the group stage. This game will pit familiar foes Cristiano Ronaldo and Gerard Pique against each other once again.
However, this will also see boys from European champions Real Madrid come face to face to lead their respective nations. Sergio Ramos will be looking to get the 2010 World Champions back on track after the disappointment in Brazil. Cristiano Ronaldo will look to inspire his nation once again after leading them to glory in Euro 2016.
Ramos is widely considered as one of the best defenders in the world but often uses dirty tactics to keep the opposition at bay. It will be interesting to see if the 32-year old will employ similar tactics against one of his best friends on the pitch. Ramos might be the one tasked to mark the Portuguese skipper during set-pieces.
This game could also feature a direct confrontation between Ronaldo and Dani Carvajal, provided the Real Madrid right-back can prove his fitness. Ronaldo's starting position starts a little off the left side of the pitch and Carvajal will have his hands full to keep tracking the Portuguese's movements.
This battle will go a long way towards deciding the result of this fixture on just the second day of the tournament.
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