Karim Benzema has finally returned to the French national team for the first time in 6 years. The head coach of the national team, Didier Deschamps confirmed on Tuesday that the 33-year-old Real Madrid striker is one of the 26 players called up for the forthcoming European championship.
Karim Benzema who made his debut for France national team also known as Les Bleus, on March 28, 2007, last played for the country in 2015. Coach Didier Deschamps decided to throw him out of the team after he was accused of blackmailing his former teammate Matthieu Valbuena.
Due to his consistent form at Real Madrid where he has scored a total number of 29 goals and provided 8 assists in 45 games this season, Benzema had to be recalled to the national team.
Though he is still undergoing trial for his alleged attempt to blackmail his former teammate, the Real Madrid star will represent France once again in Euro 2020 which was postponed to June 2021.
While confirming that Benzema has returned to the national team, coach Deschamps said: “The most important is today and tomorrow.
“There were important steps. We saw each other. We discussed this at length. I had a long reflection to come to this decision. I won’t reveal a word of the discussion, that concerns us. I needed it, he needed it “.
How Karim Benzema lost his place in France national team
Before 2015, Karim Benzema was one of the most important players in the French squad and suddenly, a teammate in the national team, Matthieu Valbuena was allegedly involved in a sex tape scandal.
Valbuena allegedly received calls from blackmailers urging him to pay a certain amount of money to prevent the sex tape from being released. Then, Benzema allegedly urged Valbuena who is 36-year-old now to pay the blackmailers the asking price.
Due to that, the retired French midfielder suspected that Benzema was conspiring with the blackmailers, an allegation the Real Madrid star denied until it became a court issue.
When the controversy was becoming uncontrollable, coach Didier Deschamps decided to throw the two players out of the national team a few months to the 2016 European championship hosted in France.
Since then, Benzema was left out of the national team despite his consistent form at Real Madrid. The controversy also made him miss the opportunity of winning the FIFA World Cup with France in 2018.
Before Karim Benzema lost his place in the national team, the Real Madrid star had scored 27 goals in 81 games for the national team. He is expected to return to national team action against Germany on June 15.
France squad for Euro 2020
Goalkeepers: Hugo Lloris (Tottenham), Mike Maignan (Loss), Steve Mandanda (Marseille)
Defenders: Lucas Digne (Everton), Leo Dubois (Lyon), Lucas Hernandez (Bayern Munich), Presnel Kimpembe (PSG), Jules Kounde (Sevilla), Clement Lenglet (Barcelona), Benjamin Pavard (Bayern Munich), Raphael Varane (Real Madrid), Kurt Zouma (Chelsea)
Midfielders: N’Golo Kante (Chelsea), Thomas Lemar (Atletico Madrid), Paul Pogba (Manchester United), Adrien Rabiot (Juventus), Moussa Sissoko (Tottenham), Corentin Tolisso (Bayern Munich)
Forwards: Wissam Ben Yedder (Monaco), Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich), Ousmane Dembele (Barcelona), Olivier Giroud (Chelsea), Antoine Griezmann (Barcelona), Kylian Mbappe (PSG), Marcus Thuram (Borussia Monchengladbach)