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Zinedine Zidane Hails Karim Benzema As Best Ever France Centre-Forward | Football News

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Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane hailed Karim Benzema as the most effective centre-forward in French historical past after his match-winning double in opposition to Athletic Bilbao put them joint high of La Liga on Tuesday. Bilbao’s Ander Capa had cancelled out Toni Kroos’s thumping strike earlier than Benzema, 32, struck twice late on, heading house a cross with 16 minutes remaining and ending clinically in stoppage time from Luka Modric’s move. Afterwards Zidane had no hesitation in declaring Benzema as France’s finest ever centre-forward, placing him on the high of a listing that features Thierry Henry, Kylian Mbappe, Jean-Pierre Papin and Just Fontaine.

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“For me, he’s the best — it’s very clear,” mentioned Zidane, the French midfield legend who gained the 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000 with Les Bleus.

“He’s proved it — he’s played at Real Madrid for a very long time, he has more than 500 appearances, all his goals… his record, all he’s accomplished here speaks for itself,” Zidane added.

Benzema arrived at Real Madrid from Lyon in 2009, however was lengthy overshadowed by Cristiano Ronaldo till the five-time Ballon d’Or winner’s transfer to Juventus in 2018.

On Saturday, Benzema’s 529th match for Real, he broke Roberto Carlos’s document for probably the most appearances by a non-Spanish participant. Benzema can be their high scorer this season.

“He’s a more mature player these days,” mentioned Zidane. “But he’s always shown that he’s not a pure nine, he doesn’t only think about scoring.

“That’s why I like him a lot, I like him, he is not solely occupied with targets. He will get concerned within the recreation, if he must move to a teammate he’ll do it.”

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Third-placed Madrid gained their fourth straight win in all competitions and are equal on 26 factors with Real Sociedad, who face troubled Barcelona on the Camp Nou on Wednesday, and metropolis rivals Atletico Madrid.

Barca are 9 factors again however play one in all their two video games in hand within the hope of giving some momentum to what has been a depressing season thus far.

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