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Benzema injured in final warm-up game as France handed major concern


Euro 2020 favourites France have been handed a major pre-tournament scare after Karim Benzema picked up a knock in their final warm-up game.

The Real Madrid striker was playing in just his second fixture for Les Bleus after Didier Deschamps recalled him from the international wilderness.

Before the 3-0 win over Wales last week, Benzema had been out of the picture for France for the previous six years.

However, after lengthy talks with Deschamps he was included in his richly talented squad, only heightening their chances of adding the European Championships to their World Cup crown from three years ago.



Karim Benzema looked in some pain after coming off during the friendly with Bulgaria
Karim Benzema looked in some pain after coming off during the friendly with Bulgaria

Benzema missed a penalty against Wales, but was handed another start against Bulgaria in Paris.

France started well at the Stade de Frances, leading through Antoine Griezmann, but Benzema failed to make it half-time, limping off the field of play after 40 minutes.

Shortly after his substitution, the 33-year-old appeared in some discomfort and was pictured covering his face in what would have been a huge concern.

Deschamps moved to allay any of those fears during the half-time interval telling reporters that the forward was taken off as a precaution after suffering a dead leg.

Benzema has plenty of time to recover with their Euro 2020 not kicking off until June 15.

It isn’t the easiest start however, as they go head-to-head with Germany at Bayern Munich’s Allianz Arena.

Arsene Wenger believes France are the “super favourites” to win the tournament, with Benzema’s inclusion only making them even more formidable.

“France will be the super-favourite of this tournament for many, many reasons,” Wenger said in an interview with beIN Sports . “The main one of course is they just won the World Cup in a convincing way in Russia.

“France is a young team. And they haven’t peaked yet. And that’s why I believe they will be the absolute favourite as well.”



Benzema adds to a forward line already including Mbappe, Griezmann, Coman and Giroud
Benzema adds to a forward line already including Mbappe, Griezmann, Coman and Giroud

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He continued: “Imagine that you can have Mbappé, Benzema, Griezmann and all the others, Coman and so.

“You would say that not only the offensive potential is exceptional, but even the offensive potential on the bench is absolutely unbelievable.

“You have players on the bench who would play anywhere else.”





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