Why Karim Benzema is yet to report for pre-season training

Karim Benzema
Photo: Getty images

Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema is the only player yet to return for pre-season training.

Luka Modric, Fede Valverde, David Alaba, Eden Hazard, Marco Asensio, Dani Carvajal, Antonio Rudiger and Aurelien Tchouameni all returned for pre-season training on Thursday, with Karim Benzema the only player yet to return.

Benzema will not rejoin the squad in training until Tuesday, July 19th, when the team will complete its first training session in the United States.

The 34 year old forward was granted a few extra few days off to rest before joining his teammates for pre-season training.

Benzema has spent most of his holidays in the United States, so he asked permission to stay there until Tuesday to avoid the long trip back to Madrid and then back to the United States.

The forward, who is the favourite to receive the Ballon d’Or this year, was granted special permission to extend his summer break until July 19.

Benzema enjoyed the best season of his career in 2021/22. The Frenchman scored 44 goals in all competitions, shattering his own best previous single season and finishing as the leading marksman in both La Liga (27) and the Champions League (15) as Real won both.

While in the United States, Real Madrid will play three pre-season games – Barcelona on 23 July, Club America on July 26 and Juventus on July 30.