Karim Benzema delighted to clinch Ballon d’Or dream

Real Madrid captain Karim Benzema has achieved a childhood dream by winning the 2022 Ballon d’Or.

The French international was widely tipped to secure his first win in the prestigious competition after leading Los Blancos to a La Liga and Champions League double in 2021/22.

Despite turning 34 midway through the campaign, Benzema netted a career high of 27 league goals, and 44 in all competitions, in 46 appearances.

His incredible performances in domestic and European action sealed a perfect return to Madrid for Carlo Ancelotti and he has now be recognised by the Ballon d’Or judges.

The award has previously been dominated by Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, with Benzema’s Real Madrid teammate Luka Modric (2018), the only other player to win it, since 2007.

“Seeing this award in front of me makes me really proud of the work I’ve done”, as per reports from BBC Sport.

“It was childhood dream to win this. I had two role models in Zidane and Ronaldo and I always dreamt that anything is possible.

“There was a difficult period where I wasn’t in the French team but I never stopped working hard or gave up.

“I’m really proud of my journey as it wasn’t easy. To be here today for the first time, I’m happy and pleased my work has paid off.

“I want to thank my team-mates at Real Madrid and France. My coach, and the Real Madrid president, who is here this evening, and also Jean-Michel Aulas [Lyon president].

“There are lots of people to thank. It’s an individual prize, but also a collective one, because of everyone who played a role in it.”

Benzema is set to be included in France’s World Cup squad in the coming weeks with the 2022 tournament in Qatar likely to be his international competition swansong.

Images via Getty Images

Tags Carlo Ancelotti Cristiano Ronaldo Karim Benzema Lionel Messi Luka Modric
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