Karim Benzema was fanboying over Ronaldo Nazario after winning the Ballon d’Or
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Karim Benzema spoke candidly about his footballing idols after he was named the 2022 Ballon d’Or winner on Monday night.
After a stunning 21/22 campaign with Real Madrid, which saw the Frenchman bag 27 goals in 32 La Liga appearances and 15 goals in the Champions League, he was the overwhelming favourite for the award.
To no surprise, Benzema was named the winner after finishing above Sadio Mane and Kevin de Bruyne. During his acceptance speech, the striker spoke about his footballing idols, Zinedine Zidane and Ronaldo Nazario.
Benzema, 34, said: “I had two role models in my life, Zidane and Ronaldo as well. I always had this dream in my mind that everything’s possible. There was a difficult period where I wasn’t in the French team but I worked hard and never gave up, kept my head down and enjoyed playing football.”
The Frenchman then spoke about Brazilian legend Ronaldo, he said: “For me, there is no other striker like him [Ronaldo]. What he did on the field is something impossible to repeat. In history, he's the only striker that, if he's on my team, I'll be on the bench without saying anything.”
The Madrid talisman then went on to thank his teammates, whilst also saying that age is just a number.
Benzema said: “I’m really proud of my journey here, it wasn’t easy, it was difficult, for me and my family. To be here today, was the first time for me. I am just really, really happy, thanks to my teammates, with Real Madrid and the national team.
“Age is just a number for me,” he continued.
“People play until their later years now and I still have this burning desire. It is this drive that has kept me going and never allowed me to let up. It kept this dream alive and was the fire behind me.
“I just want to make the most of it.”
So far this season, Benzema has scored four goals in La Liga as his Madrid side currently sit top of the table with 25 points, three points ahead of bitter rivals Barcelona.