Actual Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane hailed Karim Benzema as the most effective centre-forward in French historical past after his match-winning double towards Athletic Bilbao put them joint prime 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 dwelling a cross with 16 minutes remaining and ending clinically in stoppage time from Luka Modric’s cross. Afterwards Zidane had no hesitation in declaring Benzema as France’s finest ever centre-forward, placing him on the prime of an inventory that features Thierry Henry, Kylian Mbappe, Jean-Pierre Papin and Simply Fontaine.
“For me, he is the most effective — it is very clear,” stated Zidane, the French midfield legend who received the 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000 with Les Bleus.
“He is proved it — he is performed at Actual Madrid for a really very long time, he has greater than 500 appearances, all his objectives… his file, all he is achieved right here speaks for itself,” Zidane added.
Benzema arrived at Actual 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 Actual, he broke Roberto Carlos’s file for probably the most appearances by a non-Spanish participant. Benzema can also be their prime scorer this season.
“He is a extra mature participant as of late,” stated Zidane. “However he is at all times proven that he isn’t a pure 9, he would not solely take into consideration scoring.
“That is why I like him a lot, I really like him, he isn’t solely excited about objectives. He will get concerned within the recreation, if he must cross to a teammate he’ll do it.”
Third-placed Madrid gained their fourth straight win in all competitions and are equal on 26 factors with Actual Sociedad, who face troubled Barcelona on the Camp Nou on Wednesday, and metropolis rivals Atletico Madrid.
Barca are 9 factors again however play certainly one of their two video games in hand within the hope of giving some momentum to what has been a depressing season to this point.
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