Carlo Ancelotti said Thursday at a press conference to have reunited Karim Benzema “with great enthusiasm and with a lot of motivation” and “quite well” physically, refusing to comment on the player’s loss for the 2022 World Cup.
“I don’t go into the decision that France has taken. For them, I didn’t have a chance to play in the World Cup. For us, he has returned a player with a lot of enthusiasm, a lot of motivation,” Ancelotti said on Thursday at the press conference prior to Real Madrid’s match at home to Real Valladolid on Friday (20h30 GMT) in the 15th round of La Liga.
Removed from the French national team due to a left thigh injury on November 20, just three days before France’s entry into the World Cup, Benzema announced on December 19 the “end” of his career with the Bleus, just a few hours after the defeat of his teammates in the final against Argentina (3-3 after extra time, 4-2 on penalties).
It should be noted that the French Football Federation (FFF) evaluated his period of absence in three weeks.
“Karim returned on December 10, after the vacation we gave to everyone who was at the World Cup. He’s come back pretty well, he’s started working with the team. He played 30 minutes of the first friendly, 45 of the second, and little by little his condition has improved, “said the Italian coach about the current physical condition of the Ballon d’Or 2022.
“Now he is very well, he is very excited to come back because he has played very little in the first part of the season and I think he will show all his quality because he has already shown it in training in recent days,” Ancelotti said on Thursday.
Second in La Liga, two points behind leader FC Barcelona, Los Blancos face a busy second half of the season, participating in five competitions.