Karim Benzema’s time at Real Madrid could be about to come to an end in January with the France international linked with a switch to the Emirates.
According to numerous reports in the last week, the 25-year-old Lyon-born Real Madrid striker could be headed for the exit after fans backlashed against his recent performances and he was singled out by teammate Pepe for some sub-par performances.
After the Spanish giants allowed Gonzalo Higuain to move to Napoli this summer, despite Arsenal’s interest in the Argentine forward, Benzema has been relied upon as the most senior centre-forward at the club but, so far this term, has failed to make his chances pay, under mounting pressure.
Real Madrid had been linked with Liverpool striker Luis Suarez but their laborious pursuit of world record signing Gareth Bale took the bulk of their energy and resources to secure. However, it is expected that Carlo Ancelotti will reignite the flames of his interest in the Uruguayan in January.
Meanwhile, Arsenal are also over-reliant on one senior centre forward – fellow France international Olivier Giroud, who was picked to start over Benzema in Les Blues emphatic 6-0 victory over Australia on Friday, in which he scored twice.
Giroud has been in fine form for Arsenal this season, scoring six goals and making two assists in seven appearances for the Gunners and the 27-year-old former Ligue 1 top scorer in 2011/12 has now been picked to start ahead of Benzema on Tuesday evening for France’s clash with Finland.
This is where the rumoured interest Arsenal have in signing Benzema and the rumoured interest he has in moving to the Emirates could clash – Karim Benzema’s main objective, if he leaves Real Madrid in January, will be to play as much football as humanly possible before next summer’s World Cup in Brazil.
He will not want to sit on the bench – anywhere – and he will especially not want to have to compete for his position with the very man who has seen him benched by his national team boss Didier Deschamps. That man is Olivier Giroud.
Whilst the idea of playing out the rest of this season in misery at the Bernabeu unlikely appeals to Benzema – I have little doubt he will be hoping to get away from the pressure and scrutiny of the Spanish capital if he can – I have my reservations that he would want to go to Arsenal to compete with an in-form Olivier Giroud.
image: © Ronnie Macdonald