Karim Benzema suffered an injury scare in France training on Tuesday (Image: GETTY)
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Karim Benzema insists he is “fine” after suffering an injury scare just 15 minutes into France training on Tuesday as fitness problems continue to plague Didier Deschamps’ camp. The defending world champions have already lost Presnel Kimpembe and Christopher Nkunku to injury in the past few days and there were fears for the fitness of Real Madrid’s iconic frontman after he hobbled out of training before Les Blues flew to Qatar.
Benzema has played just seven times in La Liga this season and is already facing a battle to get back to full fitness.
That’s why alarm bells were immediately ringing when he appeared to pick up a problem but Benzema has now offered reassurance that he is just fine.
He told RMC Sport: “I’m fine. I had little pain but no tear or big injury. I could play, but not 100 per cent. I worked well in the gym – stretched out; it’s fine.”
France kickstart their World Cup campaign against Australia next Tuesday, meaning Benzema has plenty of time to recover before the Group D opener.
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Karim Benzema hobbled out of France training after just 15 minutes on Tuesday (Image: Getty)
Eduardo Camavinga, who injured compatriot Nkunku in a strong challenge on Tuesday, believes Benzema is on the road to full fitness as the Real Madrid duo look to fire Les Blues to glory in the Middle East.
“He’s doing so much better. I have a very good relationship with him, he helps me a lot at Real Madrid,” Camavinga said.
“He is a very great player who deserves what is happening to him. I hope he will be good to go for the World Cup.”
Deschamps has handed out further call-ups to Axel Disasi, Marcus Thuram and Randal Kolo Muani in the past few days to bolster his ranks for the tournament.
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Disasi stepped in for Kimpembe while Thuram was the 26th and final Frenchman to be named in the world champions’ squad.
The France boss purposely only named 25 players before Monday’s deadline to give himself some extra thinking time before calling up the Borussia Monchengladbach attacker.
Eintracht Frankfurt forward Kolo Muani received the nod this morning following Nkunku’s heartbreaking knee injury on Tuesday.
The Chelsea transfer target has sprained his knee and will therefore sit out of the tournament after hitting 12 Bundesliga goals in 15 outings for RB Leipzig this season.
The race for the World Cup golden boot (Image: SportsBroker)
This will be Benzema’s first World Cup since 2014 after a five-year absence from the national team was finally ended in 2021 for the European Championships.
Prior to the competition, Benzema had not played for Les Blues since October 2015 after he was effectively exiled from the set-up following a scandal involving former France and Lyon teammate Mathieu Valbuena.
Deschamps is not short of star quality in attack though with Kylian Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann and Olivier Giroud ready to carry the mantle if required.
Kingsley Coman and Ousmane Dembele, who both played their part in France’s 2018 triumph in Russia, are also part of the squad.
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