Not all football players are like Andy Cole and Teddy Sheringham; they famously hated each other during their time playing together at Manchester United. No, there are some friendships between players that are destined to last a lifetime.
These are the bromances that transcend the confines of the football pitch whether it is because they grew up together, their togetherness in the face of adversity or just some simple good-natured banter.
JUAN MATA AND ANDER HERRERA
The two Spanish midfielders have had a bit of a gruelling season at Manchester United. It’s enough to test anyone’s friendship but these two stick together through thick and thin. Only the closest of friends could play “Mostly Likely To” without having an argument.
It wasn’t always smiles and laughter though as they were once enemies during their time playing for opposite sides in La Liga. Herrera claims that Mata dived to get him sent off during a stormy encounter, but they’re laughing about it now.
DELE ALLI AND ERIC DIER
This is a friendship between two Tottenham players that could prove useful for the England in the summer – even if it is a bromance based on banter. You can only share an embarrassing video of your teammate dancing when there’s a close bond between the two of you.
Same goes for when you put your friend forward for a title fight with boxer Anthony Joshua.
And when you share an old video of your teammate singing in the mirror.
Mesut Özil und Mathieu Flamini
Training and playing together every day, you’re sure to strike up a bond. That’s certainly the case for Ozil and Flamini. Arsenal players were quick to nominate them for Biggest Bromance at the club’s Alternative Award of the Season back in 2015.
“We are close friends and we have a good time on and off the pitch,” Flamini says. “That’s very important because, if you want to be able to perform, you have to feel happy in your head and feel confident off the pitch.”
Lionel Messi und Sergio Agüero
The two friends have known each other since they were teenagers and they have roomed together at every tournament when playing for Argentina.
It started out as a rocky relationship though – when they first crossed paths back in 2005 at the Under 20 World Cup in Holland, Aguero didn’t even recognise the most famous young player on the planet – but maybe that’s the reason why they’ve gone on to become good friends.
NEYMAR AND DANI ALVES
“Dani is one of my best mates.” Awww. Since Neymar joined Barcelona the two players have continued their friendship on and off the pitch; to the extent that they’ve even had a bit of face painting done together.
The two played for Brazil before Neymar joined the Catalan giants, and the forward has said that Alves helped him settle in at Camp Nou: “I have Dani, who is really important in helping me adapt, both at the club and outside it. He’s someone who has helped me quite a lot.”