Karim Benzema Insists He Will Not Drive Himself ‘Crazy’ Waiting for an International Call Up

Karim Benzema is resigned to never featuring for the French national team again, with the Real Madrid star insisting that he will not “drive myself crazy waiting” for a call up from manager Didier Deschamps.

The 31-year-old hasn’t featured for Les Bleus since 2015 but his scintillating form with Real Madrid this season has raised questions over a potential recall in the near future.

But Benzema, who’s been directly involved in 25 goals this season, claims that he isn’t prepared to wait to be recalled, adding that he wishes the new generation of national team players all the best for their future with France.

I’m not going to drive myself crazy waiting for a call from the national team,” Benzema told Téléfoot (via AS). 

Karim Benzema

Besides, the France team is now something else: they are Champions of the world, there is a new generation, young players, and they are very good. I only wish them the best.”

The Lyon native was excluded from the national team set-up almost four years ago for his alleged involvement in an attempt to blackmail Mathieu Valbuena over a sex tape.


Benzema was never charged over the incident, but there has been little sign that France manager Deschamps would ever recall the Real Madrid star to his senior side.

He scored 27 goals in 81 appearances during his career with Les Bleus, which spanned over eight years having made his debut under Raymond Domenech as a teenager.

French forward Karim Benzema (L) vies wi

Benzema travelled to three major tournaments with France where he scored three goals and claimed four assists. He was also named as the country’s player of the year three times, in 2011, 2012 and 2014.

Let’

Christian Eriksen’s Agent Provides Update on Tottenham Contract Talks Amid Real Madrid Interest

?The agent of Tottenham playmaker Christian Eriksen has opened up about his client’s future with the Premier League side, insisting a decision regarding a new contract will not be made until the end of the season.

Eriksen’s current contract is set to expire in June 2020 but Spurs chairman Daniel Levy is reportedly interested in tying the midfielder down to a long-term contract as soon as possible.

The Denmark international has been in good form all season despite Tottenham missing attacking stars Harry Kane, Son Heung-min and Dele Alli at various points. 

With uncertainty surrounding the 27-year-old’s future, agent Martin Schoots has suggested contract talks with the north London side are not currently a priority.

Schoots told ESPN, as quoted by ?AS: “Christian only wants to focus himself on football. Besides his technical, tactical and athletic skills, also this attitude has contributed over the years to his impressive transformation from world class talent to world class player. 

“At this moment I would prefer not to join the speculations about contracts and transfers.”

Heung-Min Son,Christian Eriksen

The playmaker’s big name teammates like KaneAlli and Son have all recently signed new contracts with the club but Eriksen’s indecision over signing a new deal has seen ?rumours of a potential swap deal with Real Madrid involving Gareth Bale emerge.

Eriksen has become a pivotal member of the Tottenham team since his move from Ajax in 2013 and has been in good form so far this season, scoring seven goals and setting up 11 more in all competitions for his side.

Let’

Lassana Diarra Announces Retirement From Football After Being Released by Paris Saint-Germain

Former France international midfielder Lassana Diarra has officially retired from football after having his contract with Paris Saint-Germain terminated.

The 33-year-old had been on the books at the Parc des Princes for just over a year following his return to Europe in January 2018, having spent the earlier six months playing for UAE side Al-Jazira.

But French giants Paris Saint-Germain announced on Thursday that they had parted ways with Diarra following talks with the midfielder.

Shortly after PSG made their statement, Diarra revealed on social media that he would be retiring from professional football, bringing an end to his 15-year career.


The Frenchman made his name at AC Le Havre before enjoying great success in England. He initially joined Chelsea in 2005 where he would win a Premier League, FA Cup and League Cup before going on to join Arsenal and Portsmouth, winning another FA Cup in 2008.

Diarra was then moved on to Real Madrid and once again he won every domestic trophy available to him whilst in Spain. The 33-year-old eventually went on to move to Russia before taking his first career break.

He returned to play for Olympique de Marseille for 18 months but took his second spell away from the sport in 2017. Within a couple of months, Diarra was playing for Al-Jazira.

Real Madrid's Portuguese forward Cristia

On top of his club career, Diarra also earned 34 international caps for France. He appeared at Euro 2008 despite never actually making an appearance for Les Bleus and he was most recently called up by Didier Deschamps in May 2016.

Let’

FIFA 19 Ultimate Team: Jan Oblak, Kingsley Coman & Krzysztof Piatek Headline TOTW 23

It’s that time of the week again, with EA Sports’ FIFA 19 releasing their brand new team of the week cards for Ultimate Team.

For years now, gamers up and down the country eagerly anticipate the new release of cards rewarding some of the best individual performances from the previous week’s games from around the world.

Here, we spin you through the hottest cards featured in TOTW 23 – including a rather tasty Jan Oblak card and a deserved upgrade for in-form Milan hotshot Krzysztof Piatek.?


Jan Oblak (91)

Jan Oblak

The ?Atletico Madrid custodian has been imperious throughout this 2018/19 campaign, and this was confirmed once again with a clean sheet against Rayo Vallecano. This took his seasonal tally to a mighty 15 from 31 appearances, and his overall total to 108 in 193 Atletico outings. 

This TOTW 23 card hands Oblak a 91 rating, one up from his normal one, with 88 diving, 93 handling, 79 kicking, 90 reflexes, 45 speed and 90 positioning. Tasty stuff. 


Marquinhos (87)

Marquinhos

The conquerer of Manchester, Marquinhos put in one of the performances of the season from midfield against Manchester United at Old Trafford, as Paris Saint-Germain strode to a 2-0 victory in their ?Champions League last 16 1st leg. 

Another clean sheet followed in a tricky away clash against St-Etienne, with the Brazilian this time operating from his nominal centre back position. While that is where you’ll likely want to put this 87 rated card in your team, his significantly amplified pace (78) and dribbling (73) may push you to bend convention.


Kingsley Coman (85)

Trent Alexander-Arnold,Kingsley Coman

The French winger is fresh from wowing fans on this side of the channel with his performance against Liverpool at Anfield on Tuesday night in the Champions League, but this hallowed spot was earned from his two-goal showing against Augsburg in the Bundesliga. 

After being struck down with injury at the start of the season, Kingsley Coman is finally showing the world what he can do. With an 85 overall rating, 95 pace, 87 dribbling and 80 shooting, there’s very little he can’t do for your team. 


Radja Nainggolan (86)

Radja Nainggolan

After a difficult start to life at ?Inter following his big money move from Roma and the comparative form of Nicolo Zaniolo, who was included in said deal, Radja Nainggolan looks finally to be settling in with the Nerazzurri. 

His 78th minute score sealed all three points in a tightly contested affair with Sampdoria at San Siro, and his imbued dribbling (83), shooting (81) and physicality (84) should seal a whole load more for your side. 


Krzysztof Piatek (82)

FBL-ITA-SERIE A-ATALANTA-AC MILAN

Krzysztof Piatek is the man of the hour at ?AC Milan. After joining from Genoa for €35m in Janaury as a replacement for the Chelsea-bound Gonzalo Higuain, the Polish striker has notched six goals in five games – continuing his extraordinary goalscoring record this season. 

And this TOTW card sufficiently reflects this purple patch of form. With elite pace and shooting (both 84) coupled tantalisingly with slick dribbling (80) and boosted physicality (82), Piatek’s 82 overall card becomes one of the most complete of any of his competitors. 


Honourable Mentions

FBL-FRA-LIGUE1-OM-AMIENS

What would this list be without this man. Mario Balotelli has been electric since joining Olympique de Marseille in January, with three goals from his four games. He continued this form with a glorious back-heel in the build up to his side’s opener against SC Amiens last weekend, and a consummate finish of his own to bag the win. 

The card is equally special. With an 85 overall rating, you’ll be sure Super Mario can recreate this and more in your side. Elsewhere, former West Ham reject Sofiane Feghouli seems to have recovered his pre-Hammers form with Galatasaray, and 87 pace and 85 dribbling on an 82 overall card is not shabby at all. Don’t sleep on the 78 shooting, either.

Let’

Barcelona Rejected Chance to Sign Real Madrid Star Karim Benzema Due to ‘Risky Attitude’

Barcelona rejected a chance to sign Karim Benzema from Lyon in 2008, after concerns were raised over the striker’s attitude and personality.

During his time with his boyhood club, Benzema established himself as one of the most exciting young prospects in the world. He would eventually move to Barcelona’s arch rivals Real Madrid, who parted with over £30m to bring the Frenchman to the Bernabeu Stadium in 2009.

News of Barcelona’s previous interest in Benzema comes from Marca, who note that the striker was Barcelona’s primary transfer target at the time.

They wrote: “Barcelona needed a forward in 2008 when Pep Guardiola arrived at the helm of the Camp Nou and did not want to count on Samuel Eto’o.

“Txiki Begisristain, then technical secretary at Barcelona, was in charge of the operation and had visited [Benzema’s] house in Lyon in order to convince him to sign for the club, with those at the Camp Nou assuming the striker would join.

Lyon French forward Karim Benzema jubila

“However, Begisristain was not happy with anything he saw. He did not like the friendships that the no. 9 had nor the way he tried to relate to him in conversation, even commenting that Benzema did not look at him during their chat.

“For one reason or another, it was decided that the club would not sign the forward as there was a risk he would become problematic and his adaptation would not be easy.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

“Zlatan Ibrahimovic arrived in the summer of 2009 in exchange for Samuel Eto’o and David Villa arrived a year later to replace the Swede.”

Benzema has since gone on to become one of the deadliest strikers of his generation and one of the all-time greats in ?Real history. He has racked up a stunning 211 goals and 120 assists in 451 appearances and has won an impressive 17 trophies during his 10 years at the club.

Let’