How Karim Benzema and Paulo Dybala have performed with and without Cristiano Ronaldo

Paulo Dybala & Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo became the first player to win the Premier League, La Liga and Serie A on Saturday as Juventus secured an eighth consecutive title.

After getting knocked out of the Champions League by Ajax, the Italian champions beat Fiorentina 2-1 thanks to an Alex Sandro header and German Pezzella's own goal.

Ronaldo left Real Madrid last summer to join Juve in a €100 million deal and, without him, Los Blancos have sacked Julen Lopetegui, Santiago Solari and really struggled in La Liga.

However, one of the few bright spots of the 2018-19 campaign has been the excellent form of Karim Benzema, who scored all three goals in Real's 3-0 win over Athletic Bilbao on Sunday.

The hat-trick hero's display led to an eye-opening comparison between himself and Ronaldo's new strike partner Paulo Dybala, which surely has something to do with CR7.

Cristiano with Benzema v Cristiano with Dybala

Benzema became infamous for supplying Cristiano with loads of goals during his nine-year stay at the Bernabeu, often at the expense of his own scoring record.

At Juventus, Ronaldo has struck up an understanding with Federico Bernardeschi, Mario Mandzukic and there have been signs of a promising partnership with Dybala too.

Dybala and Cristiano celebrate against Frosinone

That said, once you look at the statistics of Dybala and Benzema with and without Ronaldo over the course of the past two seasons, it's pretty remarkable.

Benzema and Dybala: With and without Ronaldo

Dybala was the main man for Juventus in yet another title-winning campaign in 2017-18, registering 22 goals and five assists in 33 matches.

Since Cristiano's arrival in Turin, however, the 25-year-old Argentinian has only managed five goals and four assists in 27 league outings.

Dybala gestures in annoyance against Sampdoria

To put that in some sort of context, even Italian teenager Moise Kean has scored more Serie A goals (six) than Dybala this term - and he's only featured nine times.

It's a very similar story with Benzema, who recorded just five goals alongside Ronaldo in addition to ten assists across 32 appearances in the 2017-18 La Liga season.

Following the Portuguese superstar's departure from Madrid, 31-year-old "Big Benz" has netted 21 league goals and provided five assists in 33 matches.

Benzema celebrates one of his three goals against Athletic Club

Only Barcelona's Lionel Messi has more La Liga goals than the Frenchman this term - here are his scoring stats side-by-side with that of Dybala.

So, Dybala was directly involved in 27 league goals last season (without Ronaldo) and that figure has dropped to nine this campaign.

Meanwhile, Benzema's league goal involvement has risen from 15 in 2017-18 to 26 in 2018-19, despite Madrid currently being 13 points behind defending champions Barca.

Can we read anything into these numbers?

Of course, it's too strong to say that Cristiano is the only reason behind the contrasting fortunes of the forwards he plays with, but it certainly gets you thinking.

Benzema and Cristiano before a Champions League clash with Paris

Benzema has actually scored more league goals than Ronaldo in 2018-19 and, in February, said he can play his "real football" again without the five-time Ballon d'Or winner next to him.

The numbers from the past two seasons would suggest that, at the very least, strikers' chances to score goals are impacted by having CR7 with them in attack.

Do YOU think Cristiano is a factor behind Benzema's low goals tally in 2017-18 and Dybala's low goals tally this season? Leave YOUR opinions in the comments box below!

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