FIFA World Cup 2018: Friends become foes as Griezmann faces Godin in quarterfinals

Personal friendships and club loyalties will be put to one side on Friday, as Uruguay's captain and defensive lynchpin Diego Godin prepares to face his Atletico Madrid teammate and friend, France forward Antoine Griezmann in the World Cup quarterfinals.

FIFA World Cup 2018: Friends become foes as Griezmann faces Godin in quarterfinals

Personal friendships and club loyalties will be put to one side on Friday, as Uruguay's captain and defensive lynchpin Diego Godin prepares to face his Atletico Madrid teammate and friend, France forward Antoine Griezmann in the World Cup quarterfinals.

After forming a close personal relationship during their time as club teammates in Madrid, the pair, for 90 minutes at least, will have to battle it out as both chase glory with their national sides.

Such is the closeness of their friendship that Griezmann said one of the main reasons he chose to stay at Atletico beyond this summer, amid widespread speculation that he would move to Barcelona or abroad, was his relationship with Godin.

Despite the Uruguayan defender being godfather to one of Griezmann's daughters, he has his sights set on making life as difficult as possible for the French talisman.

Godin has years of experience in facing Griezmann in La Liga to draw on, before the French striker joined the Uruguayan at Atletico.

For three seasons at Real Sociedad, Griezmann faced the Colchoneros, anchored at the back by Godin, eight times, failing to score even once. The French striker has only tasted victory against his friend on one occasion.

On Friday, Griezmann will be hoping to break the personal curse that has befallen him when taking on his friend and lead Les Bleus to the semi-finals, where either Brazil or Belgium await.

Although he has a strong affinity for the South American nation, which has led him to declare Uruguay to be his "second" home, Griezmann will face intense hostility against a tough and hard-nosed Uruguayan side which is sharpening its claws ahead of the quarterfinal clash.

Luis Suarez, Uruguay's notoriously feisty forward, who was suspended for eight months by FIFA after biting Italy defender Giorgio Chielllini at the last World Cup in Brazil, left no room for sentiment.

"Griezmann is not Uruguayan; he is French. He has no idea what a Uruguayan has to go through from childhood to succeed. Our experience is very different", the Barcelona striker said.

Friday's highly anticipated quarterfinal will be the first time the two countries face off in a competitive fixture, in what is likely to be a clash of styles and approaches.

France's team has been lauded for its attacking verve and youthful zest, led by the likes of Griezmann, Paul Pogba and rising star Kylian Mbappe, while Uruguay can count on the likes of battle hardened veterans such as Godin and striking pair Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani.

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