‘K9 is your guardian angel’: how Karim Benzema transformed himself and Real Madrid

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France forward has saved his club in every knockout round and could claim his fifth Champions League title in Paris

A grin spreads across Rodrygo’s face. Standing by the training pitch at Valdebebas, he is discussing his Real Madrid teammate Karim Benzema, the four-times European Cup winner 13 years his senior who “always talks to me before games” and “helps us a lot, on and off the pitch”, someone “I always try to listen to”, when he is asked: So what’s the best advice he has ever given you? The answer is immediate. “To play the ball to him,” Rodrygo replies. There is laughter, but it is sound advice. “Every time I give him the ball, it works out,” he says.

In the 96th minute of the semi-final against Manchester City, Rodrygo played the ball for Benzema, delivering the cross from which Real Madrid got the penalty that could put them in the Champions League final and secure another absurd comeback. The Brazilian had scored two in a minute to take them to extra time and Benzema offered him the penalty to complete his hat-trick. “No, you have to take it, Karim,” Rodrygo replied. “Well, of course: after the season he’s been having …” he said afterwards.

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Written by Sid Lowe in Madrid
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/football/2022/may/27/k9-is-your-guardian-angel-how-karim-benzema-transformed-himself-and-real-madrid under the title “‘K9 is your guardian angel’: how Karim Benzema transformed himself and Real Madrid”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.