After announcing his departure from 14-time European Champions Real Madrid, it is believed that star striker Karim Benzema will be joining Saudi Arabia club Al-Ittihad. The news first reported by Saudi state-run Al-Ekhbariya television station reported Benzema will join the club on a two-year deal. Al Ekhbariya said Al Ittihad’s chairman and vice chairman were in Madrid to hammer out a “record deal” with Benzema.
Benzema who has become a free agent after announcing that he would leave the La Liga club after 14 trophy-laden years wants to have a new experience. It is rumoured that his former Madrid teammate Cristiano Ronaldo, who is currently playing for Saudi club Al-Nassr has had talks with Benzema to convince him to come to Saudi Arabia.
Benzema, who came to Madrid in the iconic 2009 summer transfer has spent 14 years at the club. During his tenure, he became the second-highest goal-scorer (353) for Madrid in all competitions, only behind Cristiano Ronaldo (450).
In the 14 seasons that he spent with Real Madrid, Benzema won a total of 25 titles with Real, including five UEFA Champions Trophies and four league titles. He was honoured with the prestigious Ballon d’Or award in 2022 after playing a crucial role in Madrid’s success in the La Liga, UEFA Champions League and the Super Cup in the 2021/22 season, scoring 44 goals.
Benzema, who used to be in the shadow of Cristiano Ronaldo, came into his own after the superstar departed from Real Madrid. The Frenchman’s most successful season came in the 2021-21 season, where he managed 44 goals and 15 assists from 46 appearances in all competitions. The 2021-22 UEFA Champions League was a massive success for Real Madrid. After losing to Russian club FC Sheriff Tiraspol, the Spanish giants played to their potential to lift the UEFA Champions League trophy.