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Ribery, Robben remain distant colleagues

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 8 Jun 2012

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Franck Ribery has admitted that he is not the best of friends with his Bayern Munich team-mate Arjen Robben.

The France international and his Dutch counterpart had to be pulled apart after an angry exchange at half-time during the Bavarians’ Champions League semi-final first-leg clash with Real Madrid in April, and the former Galatasaray winger was reportedly fined 50,000 euros for striking his colleague.

Ribery made a point of fist-bumping Robben after netting the winner in the Bundesliga clash with Werder Bremen the following weekend, but the 29-year-old has confessed that while the pair continue to have the utmost respect for one another, they are by no means close.

“We are not the best friends in the world,” the former Marseille man admitted during an interview with Kicker.

“But we respect each other. We are completely different.”

Bayern went onto defeat Madrid in spite of Ribery and Robben’s dressing-room bust-up, but Jupp Heynckes’ men were ultimately left heartbroken after being beaten by Chelsea on penalties in the final.

The Bavarians had dominated the tournament decider at the Allianz Arena from start to finish, and Ribery admitted that that only made the loss even more difficult to take.

“I thought that was our final, our trophy,” he said.

“(At the end) I was on the ground, broken in spirit, body – in every way.”

Ribery is preparing for France’s Euro 2012 opener against England on Monday.

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