Karim Benzema has confessed that he tried to emulate Cristiano Ronaldo’s game while at Real Madrid.
Benzema and Ronaldo both joined Madrid during the summer transfer window of 2009 and quickly formed a productive connection in the final third. They won a total of four Champions Leagues and two La Liga titles together.
Karim Benzema often served as a conduit for Ronaldo’s prolific scoring, and the Frenchman has stated that he enjoys the opportunity to learn from his partner.
“When I watched what he did, I tried to concentrate on his movements: the dribbling, the finishing, the passing, his ball handling, I dissected everything about him,” Benzema told Onze Mondial.
“But, then it’s impossible to achieve the same thing.”
Ironically, since Ronaldo’s departure, Benzema’s game has improved significantly. The forward’s best season to date was in 2021/22, when he scored 44 goals in 46 games, the most of his career.
Real staged a run of remarkable comebacks en route to the Champions League final, where they defeated Liverpool 1-0. Benzema’s performances were particularly vital.
He added: “I still have a lot of things in my head. I want to win more titles, more Champions Leagues. And with the national team, the World Cup. That’s all I have as a dream.”
Karim Benzema discusses his early Real Madrid problems
Benzema is coming off his finest season, scoring 27 times in La Liga and an astonishing 15 times in the Champions League as Madrid won both titles in 2021-22.
That’s a big step forward from his early problems in Madrid.
He only started 13 of the 27 La Liga games he played in his debut season in Spain after moving from France, and he battled to keep his spot in the starting XI.
“My first season, the first six months, were very difficult, as I was alone and I didn’t speak the language so everything was complicated,” he reflected.
“I had arrived in a new world, with a new team, a different type of football. Luckily I didn’t give up.”