The early signs
Karim Benzema, now 33, has been out of the French squad since 2015 after controversy surrounding him and Mathieu Valbuena.
Benzema ready to let the “masquerade end forever” when he stands trial for his alleged involvement in plot to blackmail Valbuena https://t.co/9O8GWTKuEe
— beIN SPORTS USA (@beINSPORTSUSA) March 31, 2021
There have been calls in the years since for his reinstatement into the squad having helped Real Madrid greatly in the absence of the departed Cristiano Ronaldo.
The former French Football Federation presidential candidate Michel Moulin, who was beaten in March by Noel Le Graet who was re-elected, said that he would ensure that Benzema was brought back into the fold.
“On the management of Karim Benzema, who is a great striker, Didier Deschamps, he is an employee of the FFF. If above him, he is told to play Benzema, he must make him play,” he said forcefully.
Although Moulin did not win, it seems as though his wish could be coming true.
Le Graet was called out by Benzema in 2019 for allegedly stopping him from being selected:
“Noël (Le Graët – FFF President) I thought you didn’t interfere with the manager’s choices! Know that I & I alone will bring an end to my international career. If you think I’m done, let me play for a country that I am eligible for.”
Noël je croyais que vous n’interfériez pas dans les décisions du sélectionneur!Sachez que c’est moi et moi seul qui mettrait un terme à ma carrière internationale.
Si vous pensez que je suis terminé, laissez moi jouer pour un des pays pour lequel je suis éligible et nous verrons.
— Karim Benzema (@Benzema) November 16, 2019
Benzema to be recalled
Many sources in France have suggested that Benzema is set for a recall to Didier Deschamps squad for the upcoming European Championships.
Benzema is coming off the back of yet another solid season. He has 29 goals in 45 appearances.
Deschamps’ typical experienced striking choice Olivier Giroud has been barely selected by Thomas Tuchel and looks a likely candidate to miss out with Benzema’s inclusion.
However, there are some suggestions that Benzema’s recall is a sign that the French national team feel that they cannot win the Euros without him.
Plus further reaction to the announcement has not been positive.
Re: Benzema | If reports are false on Benzema returning for France then the media has kicked off Euros season with a damaging destabilisation campaign. If reports are true, Deschamps must feel that Les Bleus can’t win the Euros without the possibility of Benzema. (1/2)
— Get French Football News (@GFFN) May 18, 2021
I’m not sure we should really be celebrating Karim Benzema’s return to the France team. He blackmailed a team mate. The team mate has since left, as have most of the players from that side. But it doesn’t say much about the importance of team spirit and unity.
— Richard Martin (@Rich9908) May 18, 2021