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 By Chris Wright

Gianluigi Buffon and Ivan Rakitic's embrace after Juventus vs. Barcelona

Fans of budding football bromance will no doubt be enthused by the news that the social media love-in between Gianluigi Buffon and Ivan Rakitic shows no signs of abating just yet.

The pair exchanged pleasantries on Twitter earlier in the week when Rakitic, upset at seeing Buffon weep over Italy's failure to reach the World Cup, attempted to offer the veteran goalkeeper his place at Russia 2018.

Buffon replied by thanking the Croatian with all his heart, promising him to send him a signed jersey by way of thank-you.

The next day, Buffon's Juventus played Rakitic's Barcelona in the Champions League, with the pair once again crossing paths in what amounted to a goalless draw in Turin.

"This is only a point tonight, but it's a good point. It's always a pleasure and an honour to play against great champions, like Ivan Rakitic," the 39-year-old Juve stalwart tweeted after the match.

Indeed, Buffon seemed dead set on undressing entirely after the match as, having already promised his shirt to his new Barca pal, the veteran stopper also gave away his shorts after the final whistle.

What a wonderful souvenir those sweat-infused shorts will make. They'll look simply fabulous draped across the mantelpiece.

The result in Turin moved both Juve and Barca a step closer to securing the top two spots in Group D, though the former can still be usurped by Sporting Lisbon going into the final round of matches.

Chris covers the funny side of the game for ESPN FC in the Toe Poke blog.

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