Nuno Santo - Karim BenzemaGOAL AR

'This is bullsh*t' - At-Ittihad boss Nuno Espirito Santo responds to talk of rift with Karim Benzema

  • Frenchman joined club this year
  • Reports of a power struggle with coach
  • Benzema has one league goal in three games

WHAT'S HAPPENED? The former Real Madrid attacker made the move to the Saudi Pro League club at the end of last season, but has reportedly been linked with an almost immediate exit following a supposed power struggle with the Portuguese.

Benzema has already sought to shut down such chatter, and now his manager has followed in his footsteps, stating that the speculation is unfounded while stressing the Frenchman is happy in Saudi Arabia.

WHAT THEY SAID: "I want to clarify one thing," Nuno told a press conference. "I read in the press that my relationship with Karim was not good. Those who know me will know, of course, that this is bullshit*t.

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"My relationship with all the players is good. We have a strong group relationship and we are happy with all the players. We are happy that Karim is here with us.

"He is happy, as you can see on the pitch. He is enjoying playing for Al-Ittihad. I understand where he comes from. But we are a group strong, we are a very strong group."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Benzema has endured a difficult start to life in the Saudi Pro League, with just one goal in three league games so far.

However, the veteran forward fared better in the Arab Club Champions Cup, where only former team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo outscored him throughout the tournament.


Karim Benzema Al-Ittihad Saudi Pro League 2023-24GettyKarim Benzema of Al-IttihadGetty ImagesKarim Benzema - Jota - Ittihad 2023Al Ittihad Twitter

WHAT'S NEXT? Benzema will look to add more to his tally when Al-Ittihad travel to face Al Wehda on Monday.