Benzema wins Ballon d’Or, deserved or not

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Karim Benzema won the Ballon d’Or award ahead of Sadio Mane and Kevin De Bruyne, with Cristiano Ronaldo rate 20 on the list.

Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema has been awarded the Ballon d’Or for his incredible season with the Spanish team last season.

The French man helped Real Madrid lift the prestigious league (Champions League) and also the La Liga last season.

Benzema was phenomenal for the team scoring 27 times in LaLiga and was top scorer in the Champions League with 15 goals, including hat tricks against Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea.

Benzema finished ahead of Bayern Munich’s Sadio Mane and Manchester City’s Kevin de Bruyne, who came in second and third, respectively. PSG striker Kylian Mbappe came in sixth, while Manchester United number 7 Cristiano Ronaldo was 20th.

He is the first Madrid player to receive the award since Luka Modric in 2018, and the first Frenchman to win since 1998 honoree Zidane, who awarded Benzema the trophy.

The France international picked up the prize — which is awarded by the magazine France Football — for the first time in his career at a ceremony at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris.

Benzema’s performances in the Champions League last season saw him scored 10 goals in Madrid’s knockout stage wins over PSG, Chelsea and Manchester City on the way to winning the club’s 14th European Cup.

He returned to help them win the UEFA Nations League in 2021 after 6 years of not getting call up and is expected to lead their attack at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Prior to the Ballon d’Or event the striker scored 2 goals against Barcelona in the La Liga on Sunday.

“I’m really proud seeing this prize, it’s been my dream since I was a kid. I grew up with this in my head, and after that I had the motivation,” Benzema said.

“I had two role models in my life: Zizou [Zinedine Zidane] and [Brazil legend] Ronaldo. It’s a lot of work; I never gave up and I kept that dream in my head. Anything is possible.

“It’s been difficult for me. There was a time when I wasn’t playing for the national team, but I didn’t give up. It’s been difficult for me and that just makes me stronger mentally. I’m really happy with my work.”



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