Arsenal receive massive boost in Benzema race

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Arsenal fans will have welcomed news that long-term target Karim Benzema is not considered to be the first-choice striker at Madrid by his own fans.

The Gunners expressed an interest in the French striker during the summer transfer window, and were thought to be lining up a January swoop for him after it emerged that he was having a difficult time at Los Blancos.

Benzema, who has been frequently booed by his own fans when he has played for Madrid this season, is said to be struggling to shrug off the criticism coming from the stands and, despite the support of a host of famous names at Madrid, could leave in the next window, with the Emirates Stadium a likely destination.

And any potential suitors received a boost over the weekend as it was revealed in a poll undertaken by Spanish newspaper AS, that Benzema is not the favoured striker at the club.

According to the article, over 85% felt that young starlet Alvaro Morata deserved to be starting upfront at the expense of the 25-year-old France forward, and only 14.25% of voters backed Benzema's credentials for a place in Carlo Ancelotti's starting lineup.

The poll comes in the wake of Real Madrid's disappointing 1-0 loss at home to bitter rivals Atletico Madrid, where the fans chanted Morata's name before he came on a substitute. 

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