Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has dismissed reports that he is close to sealing a big-money move to Saudi Arabia.
The long-term future of the 35-year-old at the Santiago Bernabeu has been brought into question, as his contract is set to expire at the end of this month.
According to multiple sources, Benzema is ready to quit his trophy-laden 14-year career with Los Blancos and accept a lucrative contract with Saudi Pro League club Al-Ittihad.
The 2022 Ballon d’Or winner is rumoured to have received a staggering offer for €400 million (£346 million) over a two-year contract, and the Frenchman might finalise his move this weekend.
Benzema comments on rumors of leaving Real Madrid this summer
Benzema, on the other hand, has replied to the speculation regarding his future by claiming that “the internet is not reality.”
Speaking at a press conference on Thursday, Benzema said:
“Speak about what? Why do I have to talk about the future? I’m at Real Madrid. What is said comes from the internet, and the internet is not reality.”
“At the moment, I’m here… we have a game on Sunday. I know how much Real Madrid fans love me. I feel that when I’m on the pitch.”
“I give my best for them, always. I always say that we play with 11 on the pitch but also with crucial factor, Real Madrid fans.”
“I am very proud of my work, I enjoy every moment in Madrid. Going to Valdebebas to train is not a job. In my head I enjoy Madrid. Yesterday, today and tomorrow in training.”
Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti claimed last month that the La Liga giants have no urgent intentions to sign a new center-forward due to the uncertainty surrounding Benzema’s future, but that the Frenchman is nearing the end of his career.
“Signing a No.9 is in the club’s future plans because Karim’s age is what it is,”
the Italian told reporters as quoted by The Mail.
“While Karim is in this condition we don’t think about it, also because the front line is working very well, it worked well last year and it’s working well this year.”
“Karim has had some ups and downs, Rodrygo and Vinicius Junior have developed, [Marco] Asensio is doing well. The problem over these two years hasn’t been the frontline.”
Benzema was injured during the 2022-23 season, but he still had a solid season in front of goal, scoring 30 goals and providing six assists in 42 games across all tournaments.
In 647 appearances with Los Blancos, the experienced striker has scored 353 goals and won 24 trophies, including four La Liga titles and five Champions Leagues.
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