BENZEMA WANTS MARSEILLE

Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has said that he would like Real Madrid to draw with Marseille in the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Real Madrid have come into the draw for the quarter-finals after having beaten CSKA Moscow 5-2 on aggregate. Real Madrid are one of the favourites to win the Champions League this season. However, the recent good possibility that they will be drawn against the likes of Barcelona, Napoli, and AC Milan. Even though Karim Benzema has admitted that there are no easy games in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, he has said that he would like to play against Marseille given his French connections.

Karim Benzema was signed by Real Madrid from French club Lyon a few years ago for around £ 35 million. Even though he failed to live up to the promise initially, Real Madrid manager José Mourinho has become a great favourite of the player so much so that Karim Benzema has often found himself in the starting line-up ahead of regular first-team player Gonzalo Higuain. Marseille have come into the draw for the quarter-finals after having won against Inter Milan in an extremely close encounter. The 2-1 victory at the San Siro was enough to see them through on away goals.

“As a Frenchman, I would like to meet Olympique de Marseille in the quarter-finals. However, at this stage of the competition, there are only great teams left. We all knew what had to be done against CSKA and we all gave a great performance. All that mattered was reaching the next round. We are well aware of the importance of this competition,” Benzema said. It would certainly be interesting to see the reaction of Barcelona if they were to draw against Real Madrid, against whom they have a great record in recent seasons.

BENZEMA SALUTES IMPORTANT WIN

Karim Benzema has said that it was very much important to win against Real Sociedad, as any other result would have given Barcelona the opportunity to close the gap. Barcelona are currently in the second position in the Spanish la Liga, which is the condition that one would not have witnessed in the last three years. The French forward scored in the match against Real Sociedad to give Real Madrid are 4-0 win. Cristiano Ronaldo and Angel di Maria were the other scorers for Real Madrid on the night. Even though Barcelona managed to win 5-1 against a very good Valencia side, they could do nothing about the advantage Real Madrid currently have over the Catalan club.

There was some controversy surrounding the second goal Real Madrid scored against Real Sociedad. Many are suggesting that it was not Karim Benzema who scored the goal, but it was defender Sergio Ramos who had the last touch. The former Lyon striker, however, has said that he is not worried about the goal scorer in the game, as the most important thing was to secure victory, which would prevent Barcelona from closing the gap. Real Madrid have one major test to pass in the route to the title – facing Barcelona at the Camp Nou.

“It was a great game in the end. I do not know if the second goal was mine or Sergio [Ramos’], but I do not care because it was important to win. We will continue fighting until the end,” Karim Benzema said after the 4-0 win. Real Madrid will be next facing Rayo Vallecano, and they are expected to provide a stern competition to Real Madrid. Barcelona, meanwhile, will be facing Real Madrid’s archrivals Atlético Madrid, but Guardiola will have to be aware of the fact that Barcelona’s away form has been extremely poor this season.

BENZEMA KEEPING HIGAUIN OUT

Karim Benzema has been in spectacular form this season so much so that he has been able to keep out regular goal scorer Gonzalo Higuain out of the side. He once again proved that he has the mantle to take part in the big matches and score regularly.

The 1-0 win over Malaga was a result of the Karim Benzema goal, which proved to be enough for Real Madrid to progress to the quarter-finals. Real Madrid will be meeting Barcelona in the quarter finals of the Copa Del Ray, a competition José Mourinho is considering to be extremely important.

José Mourinho has revealed that he wants to emulate the success of Barcelona in recent seasons by being in contention for every major trophy from the end of the season and winning every single one of them. Barcelona famously achieved the sextuple a few years ago and a widely regarded to be the best team in the world. However, Real Madrid have shown that they have more than enough quality to overtake Barcelona in the league, as they have done so in the table. Real Madrid are currently lead Barcelona by five points in the la Liga table, while they are also focusing equally on the cup competitions as well.

“We played an intelligent game tonight. It was a difficult series and we showed a lot of effort to win it,” Madrid manager Jose Mourinho said after the match. More than the win, it provides José Mourinho with the opportunity to take revenge for the 3-1 home defeat his side suffered at the hands of Barcelona just before the Christmas break. He has also witnessed Barcelona lift the Club World Cup for the second time in three years, and he will be looking to bring an end to the Catalan club’s progress in this competition.

Benzema Earns Praise

Jose Mourinho is famous for criticising attacking players who have not delivered as well as he expects. He is also quite famous for praising those who have been excellent for him. The latter seems to have happened in the case of Karim Benzema, who has finally won the praise of manager José Mourinho.

The 23-year-old striker arrived from Lyon with much fanfare, but struggled during the initial months of his Real Madrid career. It was soon speculated that he would soon be leaving Real on a loan deal, but that never materialised because Benzema was considered an important member of the squad.

Now, under José Mourinho, he seems to have taken another step in becoming one of the most important players for Real Madrid. He scored in the 3-2 win over Villarreal during the weekend, which helped Real Madrid maintain the three point advantage over Barcelona. It is extremely vital in the title race and José Mourinho seems to have understood it – he came out in full praise of the French striker, who has been in troubled times of late.

Speaking to the press after the match, José Mourinho said “Benzema has improved all-round, every aspect of his game. He is stronger, both in his body and in his mind, and understands the game a lot better. We know taht he can be a clinical striker of the ball, but he has also improved his defensive game. For me, finally the real Benzema is playing for Madrid.”

This is quite a lot of praise for the youngster who had become accustomed to criticism from coach Mourinho. He said that one of the reasons for Karim Benzema not being able to perform for the French team is because they lack a playmaker like Loic Remy.

Karim Benzema

Karim Benzema is a French football who currently plays for Spanish side Real Madrid. He is a player of Algerian descent, but like many of the Algerian’s living in France, has chosen to represent France instead of Algeria. He is mainly regarded as a striker, but can also accommodate any position in the wings. His powerful presence and pace have made him one of the top strikers in the world. However, he did not make his name at Real Madrid, but it was with French side Lyon that he gained acceptance all over the world.

Karim Benzema was born in Lyon, and it is no surprise that he decided to represent the youth team of Lyon. He joined the Lyon Academy at a very early age and soon progressed through the ranks. He made his debut for the senior team on January 2005 against FC Metz. He was part of the Lyon side that dominated most of the last decade in French football. Despite the Lyon team having a number of stars like Florent Malouda, Michael Essien, and John Carew, Karim Benzema had no problems when it came to making appearances for the first team.

Karim Benzema was so highly regarded at Lyon that he signed a new three-year deal with the club only days after making his professional debut. After the exit of many stars like Florent Malouda and John Carew at the end of the 2007-2008 season, Karim Benzema became the mainstay of the Lyon side. It was also the first season that he made the most number of appearances for the Lyon team. He made 52 appearances for the French side and scored 31 goals in the process. Following this season, there was plenty of speculation linking him with moves to various clubs across Europe.

Manchester United were one of the clubs very keen on signing Karim Benzema, but they eventually could not meet on a price for the French international. In the end, he moved to Spanish side Real Madrid for a reported fee of around £35 million on July 2009. It was the first transfer that will be part of Karim Benzema’s future. Even though he did not turn out to be as good as the striker would have hoped, Karim Benzema soon found his rhythm and started making a number of appearances for the Spanish side.

He initially made his debut for the team in the match against Deportivo la Coruna on August 2009. His first goal came against Xerez in the home victory over the newly promoted team. Even though his first season was below average by many aspects, he improved vastly in the second season. He scored a total of 26 goals in 48 appearances for the Spanish side.

As of now, he has also represented the French national team in 37 appearances and scored 12 goals in the process. His trophy cabinet is mainly dominated by the four Ligue One titles, one Coupe de France, and one Copa del Rey with Real Madrid.