lots of love for Karim
He may make the occasional (okay, often – here’s today’s) fashion mistake and be the king of cheesy self portraits, but Karim Benzema is also a great footballer and a fantastic person. Here are some of the things he told France Football after he was chosen as their best French footballer for 2012 (I translated to English from AS’ Spanish translation). I love everything he said, especially what he said about Cristiano, Zizou and Éric Abidal!
on the three Ballon d’Or finalists – Cristiano, Messi, Iniesta: everyone with Cristiano! Madrid was the most represented club, with six players on the list of 23.
on what winning the Liga meant to him: it meant a lot! I have been champion of the best league in the world, in the country where the most beautiful football is played and the country of the current world champion. Winning a big title with Madrid in my third season was very important for me, it was like a consecration. From the time I was a kid, I dreamed of playing for Madrid and winning titles. I hope it continues!
on enjoying assisting as much as goalscoring: it brings me the same joy, especially when it’s a good pass. The quality of a player is also measured by his assists of others. A forward has no reason to be egotistical.
on what Zidane means to him: he’s like an older brother, someone I have a lot of respect for. I feel that he supports me. It’s good for me to have him close. But we never talk about football, only about life. He told me to be myself, to play like I know how. He’s like me, someone who doesn’t let things get to him.
on whether he’d like to be coached by Zidane one day: without a doubt, we have already spoken about it. And if he wants to coach the national team, why not?
on rumors of PSG: I don’t know anything about that. I’m very good in Real Madrid and it’s where I want to be. This club continues to be my dream and I have no other in my head. It’s the biggest club in the world and our history together has not ended… if the president asks me now to renew my contract, I’ll sign it immediately.
on Éric Abidal: I voted for him as the best French player for 2012 even though he hardly played because it was a way of honoring him and his courage. Éric is winning the most beautiful of games, the most important one for him: the fight against his illness. I dedicate this trophy to him because he’s given all of us a great lesson. He’s a great person. He’s always been there for me. We talk once in a while. When I got to the first team of Lyon, he took me under his wing. He protected me. It doesn’t matter that he’s in Barça and I’m in Madrid, I’m like his younger brother.
While searching for a picture of the two “brothers,” I also found this great picture of Karim and his “niece”! Adorable!
More photos and video of Karim speaking Spanish here. And feliz cumpleaños Karim as well!
P.S. Lots of good and positive thoughts for Tito Vilanova! Here’s to a speedy recovery!