Holders France rocked as damage rules Benzema out of World Cup

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DOHA: France’s hopes of efficiently defending the World Cup had been dealt an enormous blow late on Saturday as Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema was dominated out of the match in Qatar with an injured left thigh.

The 34-year-old Real Madrid striker had been fighting the damage for a while and had performed lower than half an hour of soccer in his membership’s final six video games earlier than the World Cup.

On Saturday, he took half in full coaching for the primary time for the reason that World Cup holders gathered final week forward of the match.

He was compelled to withdraw from the session on the home stadium of Qatari champions Al Sadd with the damage and was taken for assessments.

The French Football Federation (FFF) later mentioned in a press release that the damage “will require a recovery period of three weeks”, ruling out any prospect of him being totally match for the match which finishes on December 18.

“I am extremely sad for Karim, for whom this World Cup was a major objective,” France coach Didier Deschamps was quoted as saying within the FFF assertion.

“Despite this new blow for the France team I have full faith in my squad. We will do all we can to rise to the huge challenge that awaits us.”

The 36-year-old Olivier Giroud is ready to profit from Benzema’s absence by coming into the France assault alongside Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann.

However, below FIFA rules Deschamps can nonetheless name up a substitute for an injured participant till Monday, on the eve of their first sport.

France start their defence of the trophy on Tuesday, after they tackle Australia in Al Wakrah.

They may even play Denmark and Tunisia in Group D as they goal to develop into the primary staff since Brazil in 1962 to retain the World Cup.

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