Massive blow for the Blues, Karim Benzema withdraws

The recent Ballon d’Or, touched on Saturday evening in the left thigh during training, is forced to say goodbye to the World Cup.

Special Envoy to Doha

The catastrophe. And a real cataclysm. Gigantic. Colossal. Injured during Saturday night training in Doha, while participating for the first time in the collective session with his partners since the start of preparation started Monday at Clairefontaine, Karim Benzema withdrew from the World Cup due to a left thigh injury. The Ballon d’Or 2022 with Real Madrid, sidelined from the France team for six years, said goodbye to his dreams of participating in the World Cup in Qatar. At 34, except for XXL longevity at this level, he has little chance of competing in the next World Cup in 2026.

For the France team, this is sad news in many ways. Less than three days before entering the fray against Australia, the selection is deprived of a huge player, the best in the world last season, with a package that is added to the (too) long list of elements forced to give up for the adventure in Qatar. And not the least since it concerns Paul Pogba, N’Golo Kanté, Mike Maignan, Presnel Kimpembe and Christopher Nkunku. A real disaster.

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The Blues will start the World Cup with the attacking world champion in 2018

Karim Benzema during Les Bleus training on Saturday night in Doha FRANCK FIFE / AFP

Didier Deschamps, as authorized by Fifa regulations, is able to summon a new player until the day before the first match. But the damage is done. Without Karim Benzema, who was happy to defend the blue jersey and the title of world champion, the Tricolores come forward diminished in the face of an immense challenge. This package allows Olivier Giroud to find a starting place in the French attack with Antoine Griezmann and Kylian Mbappé at his side. A trio already glimpsed… in 2018, during the Russian epic. But on the night of Doha, the France team is not smiling.

Since 1930, all the courses of the Blues at the World Cups?

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