French striker Karim Benzema is ruled out of the World Cup after suffering injury in training on Saturday.
The Ballon d’Or winner was forced to leave the training session of the defending champions France after it was observed he could have suffered a thigh injury.
“Karim Benzema is out of the World Cup,” The French Football Federation (FFF) said.
“After hurting the quadrices on his left thigh the Real Madrid striker is forced to give up on taking part in the World Cup.”
The 34 year -old who was taking part in his first full training session with Les Bleus, obviously observed the pain before leaving the training to check on the extent of the injury.
The FFF added “He went for an MRI scan in a hospital (clinic) in Doha, which unfortunately confirmed a tear,”
The FFF further said he will require a three-week recovery period. Benzema who helped Real Madrid to win the Champions League, meanwhile has reacted on his Instagram,
“In my life I have never given up but tonight I have to think about the team, as I have always done, so reason tells me to leave my place to someone who can help our group make a good World Cup.
“Thank you for all your messages of support.” Benzema wrote.
The French coach Didier Deschamps is pained by the injury, “I am extremely sad for Karim who had made this World Cup a major objective. Despite this new blow for the French team, I have full confidence in my group. We will do everything to meet the huge challenge that awaits us.” Deschamps added.
Benzema, who was spectacular last season and prior to the World Cup after winning the Champions League, was France top scorer at the 2014 World Cup. He was left out of the France team for the 2018 World Cup campaign, but was recalled by France coach Deschamps to last year’s European Championship, where he was France’s top scorer with four goals. His sterling performance was phenomenal as he went on to win the world best player winning the Ballon d’Or.
The Les Bleus coach has until Monday less than 24 hours before their clash with Australia to call up a replacement for Benzema to his 26- man squad. The French will play against Denmark four days later before taking on Africa’s representative Tunisia on November 30.
Despite the injury set back on Benzema, N’Golo Kante, Nkuku France still has a strong team to face Australia with Olivier Groud, Kylian Mbappe, Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele and Vetern Antoine Griezmann likely starter for Deschamps as the World Cup begins in Qatar in just few hours.