Karim Benzema has the opportunity to write another chapter in his name in the Real Madrid history books on Sunday when Real Madrid host Valencia. The Frenchman currently stands on 181 goals for the club, one fewer than Real Madrid legend Paco Gento, who sits in seventh on the list of all-time scorers for Los Blancos.
Benzema undisputed number one
Benzema is now going into his ninth season at the Bernabéu after joining in the summer of 2009 from Lyon. So far in 2017-18 he has managed only one goal, against Barcelona in the Spanish Super Cup, over the course of four friendlies and four competitive fixtures. The Frenchman has enjoyed almost complete hegemony over the starting striker’s spot at the Bernabéu, running a brief duel with Gonzalo Higuaín but usually operating as the undisputed first choice with a back-up behind him. This season that player will be Borja Mayoral, who returned to the club in the summer after scoring twice in 21 appearances on loan in the Bundesliga.
Butragueño in Benzema's sights
Benzema’s most prolific season at Madrid was 2011-12, when he scored 32 goals in 52 games in all competitions. In LaLiga, the Frenchman can also match Emilio Butragueño’s haul of 123 goals if he finds the net against Valencia. Benzema currently occupies ninth place in that list, with Gento in seventh on 126 strikes.
Gento, now Real’s honorary president, spent 18 seasons at the Bernabéu after joining from Racing Santander in 1953, winning 12 Liga titles and six European Cups during his career.