If you go through my tweets, you will see countless posts of me posting my anger at Karim Benzema and maybe even saying that he isn’t good enough for Real Madrid. This is not an article for me to take back anything I have said in the past but rather an article in hopes that people can still see what he brings to the club, on and off the pitch as I recently have seen for myself.
As a number 9, Karim Benzema is actually below average. He has been declining steadily over the past couple seasons and last year was pretty much a new low for the French forward. As a number 10, he is one of the best in the world. We judge him by the number on his back but not by the skillset he possesses. Carlo Ancelotti, Jose Mourinho, and Zinedine Zidane are all people who know the game extremely well and what do they all have in common? They placed their trust in Karim Benzema. Why can’t we?
Personally, my main problem is not really the fact that he’s our starting striker but rather that he never has an adequate backup, at least not since Gonzalo Higuain was at the club. For the upcoming season, we seem to be forced to accept that either Borja Mayoral will be his number two or we may even go as far as placing Marco Asensio in a false nine position. In a team like Real Madrid, I just cannot see how this is something we should blindly accept.
Now though comes the part that made me want to write this article in the first place. Karim Benzema joined Real Madrid in 2009. Almost ten years later, he has established himself as the starting striker for the team and has already broken quite a few records of his own throughout the years. He has helped us in more ways than anyone would really want to accept unfortunately but most importantly, he has always shown his loyalty.
Loyalty is a part of the game that we do not see much anymore. In a summer where we have seen Zinedine Zidane and Cristiano Ronaldo leave the club while Luka Modric’s future currently hangs in the balance, there aren’t many Karim Benzema’s around anymore. He knows that many other clubs would beg for his services and he has been in a position where he could use other offers to negotiate a pay-rise in Spain but instead of causing all that drama and unwanted attention, he simply shuts each and every single rumor down. He will publicly call you a fraud and a liar if you try to begin a rumor about him leaving the club and he will easily turn you down if you express an interest in signing him. He has aimed to be a Real Madrid player and ever since the day he made the move to Spain, he never looked back and has spent every summer trying to be the best version of himself for the upcoming season.
Instead of hating him and practically begging for him to leave the club, why not respect him and admire his loyalty? Why can’t we try and stand united behind our starting striker instead of spending each and every season hating on his every movement? For those who publicly choose to criticize him, it’s clear that your tactics have not worked. Maybe, just maybe, if we publicly support Karim Benzema, it will be that last bit of motivation he needs to become the best version of himself. Let’s stop hating a player at the club we love and stand together to show him the loyalty that he has shown Real Madrid.