Football

Karim Benzema responds to Real Madrid summer transfer speculation

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Karim Benzema insists there was never any chance that he could leave Real Madrid this summer amidst interest from Manchester United and Arsenal.

The French forward's future at the Bernabeu was thrown into doubt following the arrival of Rafa Benitez this summer as the replacement for Carlo Ancelotti, who was relieved of his duties after failing to win a trophy last term.

It was speculated that the former Chelsea and Liverpool manager would deploy Gareth Bale as his centre-forward this season which would limit Benzema's game time - something which prompted Arsenal in particular to register an interest.

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The 27-year-old started his first game of the season for Real Madrid in their 5-0 thrashing of Real Betis before the international break and got on the scoresheet.

Manchester United were also linked with Benzema before the window shut but he insists that despite the speculation there was never any chance he'd join the Red Devils, Arsenal or anyone else.

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"There was nothing in the talk of a transfer away from Madrid," he told Telefoot. "I'm happy at my current club, it's the best in the world. I'll continue to work here and be happy where I am."

Benzema was back on the pitch in France's win over Portugal this weekend and Benzema says he is happy to be back playing football after a string of injuries. "It's been like four months since I played properly," he explained. "I've played a little bit for Madrid, but that's all. I'm working little by little to be back in shape."

Criticism

Arsenal have come in for criticism for failing to add Benzema or any other striker before the window slammed shut, while Manchester United switched targets at the last minute to land teenager Anthony Martial from Monaco in a deal worth up to £58 million.

Gunners legend Thierry Henry believes Arsene Wenger has missed a chance to press on for the title this term by failing to persuade Benzema to head to north London. “Right now, they are already five points behind Manchester City, have still not won at home and won two of their games by an own goal – which is actually their best goalscorer at the moment," the former striker said.

“It does not look like they are going to win the league like this. But I think Arsene believes he can win the league with that team and that the team is good enough and that is his decision."

Could Arsenal have won the title if they signed Karim Benzema?

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Topics:
Football
Arsenal
Karim Benzema
Real Madrid
Premier League
Manchester United

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