Karim Benzema has revealed he has heard nothing from former teammate Cristiano Ronaldo since he clinched the 2022 Ballon d’Or.
The Frenchman lifted the illustrious prize for the first time in his career following an outstanding 2021/22 campaign for Real Madrid, where his prolific form fired them to a La Liga and Champions League double.
Ronaldo, meanwhile, endured his lowest finish in the rankings since 2005, placing 20th on the night after a difficult return season at Manchester United that soured in the second half of the year.
When asked by French outlet Telefoot if he had heard from his former Real teammate, Benzema admitted: “No, not yet.”
The awards ceremony took place almost a month ago and five-time winner Ronaldo was not present on the night to see Benzema lift the award.
Both have slowed down considerably in 2022/23 for various reasons, but are remembered fondly for their partnership in Madrid, alongside Gareth Bale. Benzema was key to Ronaldo’s rampant firing rate at Real where he swept up accolades, and has since become the club’s second all-time top scorer behind only his former colleague.
Despite their struggles this season, both Benzema and Ronaldo will represent their nations at the 2022 World Cup this month.
Marcus Rashford pays tribute to late friend with goal celebration
Marcus Rashford has revealed that his celebration following his first goal against Wales was a tribute to a friend who’d recently passed away.
The Man Utd man was in electric form for the Three Lions on Tuesday evening, scoring a brace and catapulting himself to the top of the tournament goalscoring charts in the process. In scoring his second and third goal in Qatar, Rahsford became the first Man Utd player to score three goals at a World Cup for England since Sir Bobby Charlton achieved the feat way back in 1966.
Speaking after the game to the press, Rashford revealed that he pointed to the sky following his first goal in order to pay tribute to his friend who passed away following a long battle with cancer:
“I lost one of my friends a couple of days ago. He had quite a long battle with cancer. I’m pleased I scored for him, he was a big supporter and good friend of mine. He was someone who came into my life.”
Rashford also gave an assessment of the game itself and his overall performance stating: “I fancied a free-kick in the first half, but the one in the second half was in a better position. From there it’s about being calm and executing what you do in training. They don’t go in often but I was glad it did today.
“It’s a great feeling. We were a bit disappointed after the USA game, and the only way to bounce back is to have a good performance in your next game; I thought we did it. It was just about taking the chances when they came.”
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Tottenham ask Inter about availability of key player
Tottenham Hotspur have made enquiries to Inter over right wing-back Denzel Dumfries, 90min understands.
Spurs are on the hunt for reinforcements at wing-back, with 90min previously reporting that one of Emerson Royal and Matt Doherty could be sold in January, while a loan move for Djed Spence looks likely.
On their list of targets is Dumfries, who is currently at the World Cup with the Netherlands. Inter need to sell one star player by the end of the season to help ease their financial woes.
It was previously thought that Milan Skriniar would be the man to make way, but he will either sign a new contract or leave for free when his current deal expires at the end of the season.
Instead, Inter will look to sell Dumfries in January and loan him back for the rest of the season, though Spurs would push to take him off their hands straight away.
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In addition to Tottenham, Chelsea are also interested in the Dutchman, and this could drive Dumfries’ price up.
Dumfries signed for Inter in 2021 as a replacement for the outgoing Achraf Hakimi, whose sale partly contributed to the exit of current Spurs head coach Antonio Conte.
He scored five goals from wing-back in his debut season at San Siro and has found the net twice more this term.
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