Karim Benzema has dealt with a setback to possible interested parties by announcing that he will extend his contract with Real Madrid until 2024, thereby remaining with the 14-time European Champions.
The 2022 Ballon d’Or winner, who has been with the Los Blancos since 2009 goes out of contract in the summer is said to have verbally accepted the extension before Wednesday night’s Champions League game against Liverpool.
The French marksman had been a pivotal part of the white infantry since his arrival and became the anchor of the historic club after the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo in 2018. Benzema became the fifth French footballer to receive the Ballon d’Or after a remarkable 2021/2022 season culminating in a historic victory in the Champions League against Liverpool at the Stade De France where Real Madrid claimed their 14th title.
Head coach Carlo Ancelotti advocated for the club’s management to extend Benzema’s contract, even though some of them were apprehensive about his age. Karim Benzema has aged like a fine wine showcasing skill under pressure and situations turning adversities into opportunities and exhibiting the qualities of a true leader with a relatively younger squad in the last few seasons. Although Benzema’s decision to stay at the Bernabeu might not be unexpected for some teams who were monitoring his expiring contract, they will be disappointed that they can no longer acquire a player of his caliber without shedding fat money.
Several parties had expressed interest in Benzema, including clubs in Saudi Arabia and his former team Lyon, but he had indicated his willingness to renew his contract and will now remain with the Los Blancos for his 15th season.
There were rumors that Manchester United was considering the possibility of acquiring last season’s top scorer in the Champions League, as they search for a suitable candidate to lead a crippled forward line after Ronaldo’s abrupt departure during the January transfer window.
Now that they have to shift their focus on signing another world-class striker in Harry Kane, who just had another season without accolades and can dream of getting some at Erik Ten Hag’s newly resurrected Manchester United.