Real Madrid News
Benzema has cut off all contact with France national team camp after injury – report
If the developments of the past week are anything to go by, it is clear that the relationship between Karim Benzema and the French national team are souring fast. The friction between the two parties has existed for a while now, but Didier Deschamps’ premature decision to remove Benzema from the World Cup squad has catalysed the process.
According to reports from L’Equipe, Benzema has cut off all contact with the French staff since his injury. He wanted to stay with the squad and see how his condition evolved but the management, including Dr Franck Le Gall, did not see the point in him staying.
As it turned out, the striker made a speedy recovery and was completely fit by the time France navigated through the group stage. He could have been part of the team’s starting lineup as early as the clash against Poland and is undeniably hurt by the way his situation was handled.
Les Bleus have reached the final of the World Cup regardless and still boast of one of the world’s most lethal forward lines. Yet, one cannot deny that the Ballon d’Or winner would have taken the team to the next level.
France face Argentina in the final later today, and Benzema could have a word or two to say if his countrymen falter at the final step without him. After all, Deschamps refused to even comment on his possible inclusion in the press conference earlier this week.
Real Madrid would not have objected to the veteran travelling to Qatar to participate in the final, given that his name is still registered as a member of the squad.
The decision to stay away from the camp is Benzema’s himself, with the centre-forward reportedly declining an invitation from France President Emmanuel Macron to attend the final along with other players like N’Golo Kante, Paul Pogba, and Christopher Nkunku.
Real Madrid News
Real Madrid, Barcelona, Liverpool monitoring 19-year-old Bundesliga wonderkid – Romano
According to Fabrizio Romano, Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Liverpool are all monitoring Bayer Leverkusen and Germany wonderkid Florian Wirtz.
After recovering from his ACL injury, the teenage sensation has been slowly working his way back to his best form. So far this term, Wirtz has managed to rack up a tally of two goals and six assists from 13 matches in all competitions.
The 19-year-old’s talent and potential have never been in question and hence it does not come as a surprise that elite clubs such as Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Liverpool are all keeping tabs on the German international.
A versatile attacking midfielder, Wirtz is capable of playing anywhere in the final third of the pitch and backs up with top-notch end product. Be it as a false-nine or in a more withdrawn role, the youngster has excelled for Bayer Leverkusen, catching the attention of top teams.
Real Madrid, for their part, are also understood to be among Wirtz’s admirers. Given the situation surrounding Karim Benzema’s fitness and the lack of backup at the top, the youngster could be an option, as he has shown potential while operating through the middle.
But Barcelona also have a strong interest in the teenager with reports even suggesting that they have already made contact with his father to enquire about his situation.
At the same time, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is understood to be a huge admirer of his fellow German and with Roberto Firmino on his way out, Wirtz could be lined up as a possible replacement.
However, Romano adds that the expectation is that Wirtz could stay at Bayer Leverkusen for one more year and depart Germany once the UEFA Euro 2024 is out of the way.
For now, there have been talks or negotiations with any clubs, but Real Madrid, Barcelona and Liverpool are all tracking Wirtz and his progress in Germany.