Toto Wolff believes it is up to Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg to "fight for every little advantage" because they are being treated as equals by Mercedes.
The relationship between the two Drivers' Championship leaders seemed to reach boiling point at last month's Monaco Grand Prix, where Hamilton suggested that Rosberg purposefully crashed his car during qualifying in order to secure pole position.
Hamilton insists that the pair remain friends after they held 'clear the air' talks after the race, but Wolff admitted that their relationship is likely to remain a tense one as long as both drivers are in contention to win the title.
"It's an intense relationship but this intensity is normal: they are both competitive guys and they are fighting for a World Championship," Wolff told the official Mercedes website.
"They have a competitive car with exactly the same strengths and weaknesses, so they need to fight for every little advantage wherever they can.
"We have seen a lot of talk about their relationship but that's not the key thing for a successful campaign: it's a job, not a holiday, and the drivers need to work with and for the team first of all."
However, Wolff played down suggestions that their rivalry will become as heated as the one between Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost in late 1980s and beginning of the 1990s.
"There have been a lot of comparisons to the Senna/Prost scenario, which is a kind of compliment to both Lewis and Nico. But the situation here is very different. The racing philosophy of Mercedes-Benz is to allow our drivers to compete: we let the boys play with their toys, unless they break them," Wolff continued.
"Sure, it can be pretty tense when they are racing so hard, but the drivers know we will not tolerate any incident. Both of them know that they are representing not just themselves, and not just the team, but nearly 300,000 people who work for Mercedes-Benz around the world."
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