Benzema has long been considered one of the greatest strikers of his generation and has been a strong force for Real Madrid for over a decade.
The French international also has shown no signs of slowing down any time soon, and has only gone to improve his form both for club and country.
Benzema scored on his debut for the Spanish giants and has gone on to net over 300 goals La Liga’s current champions, including 11 goals and 10 assists in 41 El Clasico appearances.
Most recently, Benzema saved his side from what could have been an unsalvageable position against Manchester City in their first leg semi final, scoring in the 33rd minute and an 82nd minute penalty - seeing the first leg end 4-3 in favour of Pep Guardiola’s side.
He then went on to score in his team’s La Liga winning match against Espanyol on Saturday 30 April after coming on late into the second half.
His efforts for club and country have also prompted the DailyMail’s Martin Samuel to suggest that “If Karim Benzema did not play for Real MAdrid, fans of Manchester City would have booked their flights to Paris by now.”
With just over 24 hours until the French international is in action again, NationalWorld takes a look at Benzema’s notable career so far…
What was Karim Benzema’s record before Real Madrid?
Born in Lyon, France, Benzema started out his youth career with Bron before joining Lyon in 1997. He was part of the Lyon squad at youth level and their B team before making his first senior appearance in 2005 during a match against Metz. He assisted Lyon’s second goal and would go on to then sign his first professional contract on a three-year deal.
In 112 club appearances for Lyon, Benzema scored 43 goals and became one of France’s highest paid footballers after extending his contract in 2008.
During his time at Lyon, he earned himself the Ligue 1 top scorer, French Cup top scorer, several player of the month awards as well as Peace Cup Best Player and Peace Cup Bronze Boot.
What is Karim Benzema’s record at Real Madrid?
In 2009, it was announced that Benzema had been sold to Real Madrid for a transfer fee of €35 million, although the rise rose to €41 million based on incentives.
Immediately, the youngster made an impression, scoring on his debut in Real Madrid’s 1-0 win over Shamrock Rovers in Dublin.
This season, Benzema is La Liga’s top scorer with 22 goals. He also has the most assists (11) in the league and recently celebrated becoming Madrid’s third all-time highest goalscorer, scoring 41 goals in 41 appearances this season alone in all competitions.
Benzema surpassed the former club legend and manager Alfredo Di Stefano’s record of 308 goals and is now closing in on Raul’s second place spot.
Many fans feared when Portuguese icon Cristiano Ronaldo left the side, but Benzema has thrived, becoming a staple on whom Carlo Ancelotti can always rely.
In August 2021, it was announced that Benzema had signed an extension with Real Madrid which would see him at the club until at least 2023.
What is Benzema’s Champions League record?
In 2021/22, Benzema is the Champions League’s top goal scorer and currently sits on 14 goals for his club as of Tuesday 3 May 2022.
Overall, Benzema is fourth in the list of all-time top Champions League goalscorers with 85 goals - Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski is on 86.
Karim Benzema away from the pitch
The 34-year-old is not without his controversies, with the latest involving fellow French international Mathieu Valbueana.
Benzema was arrested by French Police in 2015 for his alleged involvment in the situation and was latterly found guilty of conspiring to blackmail his former international teammate on 24 November 2021.
The French international also drew criticism back in 2006 when speaking of his possible selection for the Algerian national team. Speaking to RMC, Benzema, whose parents are both Algerian, said that despite Algeria being in his heart and the country of his parents, he would play for France as it was a better option for his career.
When will Benzema play next?
Karim Benzema is set to feature in Real Madrid’s second leg match against Manchester City at the Bernabeu Stadium tomorrow night, Wednesday 4 May 2022.