Saturday, 23 March, 2019

Zidane defends out-of-form Benzema ahead of Juventus tie

10 Apr 2018, 21:43 ( 11 Months ago)

DF-Xinhua Report
Real Madrid's Karim Benzema (L) celebrates with coach Zinedine Zidane. File Photo Xinhua.


Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane on Tuesday defended French striker Karim Benzema who was out of form ahead of Wednesday's Champions League quarterfinal return leg to Juventus.

   Benzema looks certain to start on Wednesday despite a disappointing season which has seen him score only eight goals in 32 appearances in all competitions for Real Madrid and become a target for boos from the fans.

   His 26-minute cameo in the Madrid derby on Sunday when he touched the ball just five times sums up his season to date, but Zidane insisted he saw no change in the striker, who has been at Real Madrid since joining from Olympique Lyon in 2009.

   "I think he is the same as always. The only thing is that he is having a few problems because of all that is being said about him."

   "Of course he would like to score more goals, and he always works well in training. He is always there to help his companions and he is focused on what he needs to do," said Zidane.