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Will Benzema play for France in 2022 World Cup final? Deschamps asked about role for Real Madrid striker

  • Forward injured on eve of tournament
  • Has returned to training
  • Les Bleus preparing to face Argentina

WHAT HAPPENED? The Real Madrid striker, who is now a Ballon d’Or winner, was initially ruled out of Les Bleus’ plans in Qatar after suffering an untimely thigh injury on the eve of the tournament. He has, however, made a return to training and remains registered in France’s squad, meaning that he could be welcomed back into the fold and handed game time in a meeting with Argentina on Sunday.

WHAT THEY SAID: Deschamps is, however, giving little away when it comes to Benzema, with the World Cup-winning player and coach saying when asked if the 34-year-old forward will play some part against Lionel Messi and Co: “I don't really want to answer that question. Next question.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: France’s boss previously said on the subject when it emerged that Benzema could be fit enough to be involved in the knockout stages at Qatar 2022: “Wow. Well, I’m not sure [what to say], that’s really not something that I’m thinking about. You seem to know a lot about the situation but I haven’t really been following who has been saying what.”

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Karim BenzemaGetty

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WHAT NEXT? Fitness issues have been a familiar theme for Benzema in the 2022-23 campaign, with just 12 appearances taken in at club level for Real – with his last start for the Blancos coming in a La Liga clash with Elche on October 19.