Player Profile: Karim Benzema

Name: Karim Benzema

D.O.B: 19 December 1987

Position: Striker

Honours:

2004: UEFA European U-17 Football Championship (France U-17)

04/05; 05/06; 06/07; 07/08 – Ligue 1 (with Lyon)

2006 & 2007: Trophèe des Champions (with Lyon)

2007: Peace Cup (with Lyon)

2008: Coup de France (with Lyon)

2007-2008: Ligue 1 Top Scorer

2007-2008: Ligue 1 Player of the year

2007-2008: Ligue 1 Team of the Year

January 2008: UNFP Player of the month

2008: Bravo Award

 Benzema recently became one of the Galacticos, after Real Madrid signed him from Lyon over the summer for €35 million. The Frenchman is tipped to become one of Real Madrid’s brightest stars. He will however, have to fight for the spotlight, as fellow Galacticos Kakà and Ronaldo are quite well known themselves;-) 

Born and raised in Lyon, Benzema was part of the Olympique Lyonnais Academy. During his academy days, he was sought after far and wide by many a club. He eventually made his first team debut for Lyon in 2005 and signed his first professional contract with the club. In 2007 Benzema was given the no. 10 shirt and responsibility of lone striker. 

Benzema played in all of the French youth team, from the U-16 category onwards. He was part of theU-17 squad that won the European Football Championship for that age group. In March 2007, Benzema made his international debut for France. He was eligible to play for Algeria, the country of his parents, but chose the French national team. 

With four Ligue 1 titles under his belt, Benzema looked for a new challenge. Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal were options, all willing to part with their cash for the services of this youngster. However, one team was in the heart of Benzema, it was always his desire to one day don the white of Real Madrid. He signed for Los Blancos in the summer of 2009. He scored in his debut match against Shamrock Rovers in the pre-season. Not likely to scoop the award this year, but he confesses that one of his ambitions is to someday win the Ballon d’Or like fellow countrymen Zinedine Zidane and Raymond Kopa.

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