Offering Benzema a new contract is a big mistake (Tomás Roncero)

10 Feb 2017

I don’t hide the fact that, in spite of his unquestionable quality, I have long lost faith in Benzema. Perhaps I’ve been influenced by the fact that in the big finals, Karim has never found the net. He didn’t even play in 2011: the Copa del Rey final at the Mestalla against Barça (remembered for Cristiano’s goal). He did start in 2014, though, against the same rival (remembered for Bale’s goal).

He also started in the Champions League final in Lisbon that year and had to be substituted due to his physical problems. Nor could he score in the final in Milan last year during the conquest of La Undécima. At 1-0 he had a clear one-on-one with Oblak that would have buried the game and avoided the suffering of extra time and penalties. But he hit it at the Slovenian’s body. Neither has he managed to breach Sevilla’s defence in two UEFA SuperCups (2014 and 2016). It’s not the kind of scoring record you expect from a Real Madrid centre forward.

The club can renew his contract, but it’s a mistake…

During these almost eight years he has provided the team’s attack with class and elegance. A combative and intelligent accomplice of Cristiano Ronaldo…that is not argued and he’s valued for it. He’s scored a good goal at Camp Nou and against Guardiola’s Bayern Munich in a Champions League semifinal. But Karim, who turns 30 on December 19, is already written off. The Bernabeu despairs at his idleness(gesturally and actually). Everything comes to the end of its cycle. I see this as the end of Benzema’s era in Madrid. The club can renew his contract, but it seems to me like a mistake.

When I see Morata and Mariano, the equation is diametrically opposite: hunger + hunger. Morata only has two goals less than Benzema despite the Frenchman having played almost 600 minutes more. If Morata had three consecutive starts, we could evaluate him better. But in the end, Karim always plays…

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