Real Madrid legend tips Benzema for success
Any player in world football would welcome a word or two of praise from former Real Madrid midfielder Zinedine Zidane. The France legend is one of the greatest players of all time, so his opinion is going to be listened to with interest.
With this in mind, current Madrid striker Karim Benzema will be delighted that Zidane believes he can become a star at the Bernabeu in the coming years. The former Lyon man has had a relatively slow start to his career at Madrid, so these positive words will be more than welcomed.
Following a big-money move to Spain in the summer, Benzema has failed to hold down a regular place in the team and thus has failed to live up to the expectations of those who spoke about the goals he was going to score for Madrid this season.
There has even been speculation that Benzema could leave Madrid, with Manchester United thought to be interested in making an offer for the Frenchman this summer.
However, Zidane doesn't think this would be beneficial for the player or his club. He believes it takes time for a young player to settle down and perform to their best in a new country.
Referring to his early days as a Real Madrid player, Zidane said the most important thing to do when joining is to "learn to speak the language". The former Juventus player admits that he benefited from the fact that his "wife is of Spanish origin", as this helped him settle in.
As for Benzema, Zidane added that he doesn't worry about him because he is clearly a player who has "the ability to succeed". The slow start he has made to life in Spain will just be a "period of adaption" according to Zidane because "talent is not always enough".
Overall, Zidane believes that if Benzema is able to learn the Spanish language and settle into life in the country in the coming months, he could soon be back to his best.
Should this be the case Benzema will come into his own at Real Madrid next season as he looks to live up to Zidane's prediction that he can become a legend at the club.
Benzema will also be looking to make an impact in South Africa this year as he should be part of the France squad for the tournament.
However, France's World Cup betting odds suggest the team is unlikely to repeat their 2006 performance which saw them reach the final.
Meanwhile, in horse racing news, many pundits feel that Mon Mome could be a good Aintree Grand National bet after the handicapper gave him a favourable placing in the weights.