Karim Benzema, the blue fear

Released from training on Saturday evening through injury, the Real Madrid striker is very uncertain for the rest of the World Cup. Concerns around his case awaken certain ghosts from the past above the blue train.


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Youssouf Fofana, 23, two selections and all his teeth, has a dream: to play with a Ballon d’Or one day. “Unfortunately for me, I haven’t yet been able to wear the same jersey as Karim in an official match. I hope it will happen very quickly and that I will get a kick out of it. I think it must be easy to play with this type of player.” , slipped the AS Monaco player on Saturday afternoon on the stage of the press room at the Jassim bin Hamad stadium in Doha. Miracle: in the wake of his press conference, the young international saw Karim Benzema tumble in the middle of what was his first collective training since the start of the rally. Disaster: while he was in a starting team alongside Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappé and Olivier Giroud, the Real Madrid striker could not go to the end of the session and left his friends in full opposition after feeling a sharp pain in the left quadriceps. Without delay, it is then, according to information from The Team and Figaroleft for an MRI and is currently awaiting news, his participation in the match against Australia on Tuesday, having already been grated.

The Terraillon trigger, 26 short minutes played for a month, could also potentially draw a complete line under a World Cup which will officially begin this Sunday, while Didier Deschamps has until Monday evening, the day before the first dive of the Blues, to recall a substitute. That we are far from the night of the announcement of the list, where the coach had insisted that there was nothing to eat your nails. “I spoke with Karim to have all the ins and outs, and if he was not on the pitch, it was only because he had two small physical problems to manage.he said on November 9 in the auditorium of TF1. There is no need to worry about his situation. Compared to what a World Cup represents, he is simply vigilant. He played 30 minutes last week and he felt discomfort two days later, but I repeat: there is no concern. » All that is now erased from minds.

A plan B with Dembélé

In recent weeks, Carlo Ancelotti has not hidden his doubts about the physical condition of his striker, and this new glitch is necessarily a dirty trick for a French team in search of certainty before getting into the ring to defend his title. On Friday, Adrien Rabiot wanted to be reassuring – “Karim as Raphael (Varane) are OK. They simply follow a protocol, they respect it, but they want to play and have good feelings. We have confidence, and Karim remains a special case. He’s a striker, he knows how to handle himself, and if we don’t have him for the first game, we will have him for the second.” -, and Thursday, Aurélien Tchouaméni also mentioned a teammate “serene” . We now have to rack our brains: without Benzema, apart, but very deadly, Deschamps should probably line up Olivier Giroud at the forefront of an eleven tested Friday evening in training with Mbappé on the left, Griezmann in 10 and a Dembélé very legged on the right in a 4-2-3-1 which, according to several sources, should fall back to 4-3-3 in the defensive phase where Antoine Griezmann would then integrate a midfielder made up of Rabiot and Tchouaméni. What is certain for the moment is that, since the start of the rally, the case of Benzema worried the French staff much more than that of Varane, who should return to the starting lineup against Denmark. While waiting for the results of the MRI of its number 19, here is the blue car, which despite everything has two other cartridges (Thuram and Kolo Muani) in shape in addition to Giroud, with yet another nail in the tire and with the need to chasing the clouds, at the risk of experiencing a World Cup 2002 bis or a similar episode at the start of Euro 2008, polluted by the injury of Patrick Vieira. Will Youssouf Fofana’s dream remain just a dream? Answer in the evening.

By Maxime Brigand, in Doha

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