Karim Benzema set for Saudi Arabia transfer

Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema has been offered a two-year contract by Saudi Arabia’s Al Ittihad for an incredible €400 million. The French striker is mauling over the idea of joining the Saudi club despite having several teams interested in his services. 

The 35-year-old striker has one season left on his Real Madrid contract according to Transfermarkt. However, it is claimed that Benzema is ready to quit Real Madrid and move to the Middle East for the eye-watering sum. 

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Benzema is the reigning Ballon d’Or winner and signing him would be a coup for the Saudi football league. Although Benzema is in his mid-30s, he is still a player competing at the highest level. Benzema is a Real Madrid club legend and ranks second in goals all-time for the club. The striker tallied 353 goals in 647 matches for Los Blancos. Benzema has won five Champions League trophies and four La Liga titles in 14 seasons in Madrid. Benzema has won 24 trophies at Madrid. He joined the club from Lyon for £30m in 2009. 

Madrid are seeking to freshen up the team. Several players, including Benzema and Luka Modric, are in their 30s and are on high wages at the Santiago Bernabeu. Madrid are interested in signing strikers Joselu and Roberto Firmino. The former plays for Espanyol and would join Madrid on loan, and the latter is now a free agent of his contract with Liverpool expired. 

Benzema struggled through 2022-23 with injuries. He missed 12 of 38 La Liga games due to injuries. He was included in the starting XI just 23 times. Benzema still managed to score 18 goals for Los Blancos, although the club failed to retain both the La Liga title and the Champions League trophy. 

The striker has denied reports he wants to leave the club. Benzema recently reiterated that he is a Madrid player. 

“Why do I need to talk about my future? I am at Real Madrid,” Benzema said at Marca’s Legends ceremony. “Not everything that you read on the internet is reality. For the time being, I’m here. I’m enjoying my time. There is a game on Saturday, and I train tomorrow.”

It is claimed that Benzema will wave goodbye to Madrid fans after the final whistle against Athletic Bilbao on matchday 38. One of Madrid’s physios is expected to move to Saudi as well. Cristiano Ronaldo left Madrid in 2018, leading to the Frenchman becoming Real Madrid’s main attacking player. He relished in the role, leading Madrid to further Champions League and La Liga glory. The ex-teammates could soon play against each other in Saudi. 

Madrid’s squad overhaul will begin with Benzema’s teammate Marco Asensio. The forward could join Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer. However, Premier League clubs Aston Villa and Arsenal are hopeful of signing the forward. Meanwhile, 29-year-old Madrid striker Mariano Diaz is wanted by West Ham and Wolverhampton Wanderers. 

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