Algeria cool on Benzema overtures
Algerian national team coach Djamel Belmadi offered his view on the possibility of the Real Madrid striker playing for the Desert Foxes.
Karim Benzema's ongoing differences with the French Football Federation (FFF) have been rumbling on this weekend after an exchange between head of the FA Noël Le Graët and the player. The striker took to Twitter to reply to an earlier comment from Le Graet when the executive claimed that: "Benzema is a fine player and I've never questioned his ability but his time with France is over".
Benzema posted by way of reply on Saturday: "Noel, I thought you were not planning on interfering with the decisions of the coach! Know that it is me and I alone who would put an end to my international career. If you think I'm finished, let me play for one of the countries for which I'm eligible and we'll see".
Noël je croyais que vous n’interfériez pas dans les décisions du sélectionneur!Sachez que c’est moi et moi seul qui mettrait un terme à ma carrière internationale.— Karim Benzema (@Benzema) November 16, 2019
Si vous pensez que je suis terminé, laissez moi jouer pour un des pays pour lequel je suis éligible et nous verrons.
The comments from Benzema opened the door to a new possibility of international football for the Real Madrid player with Benzema indeed eligible to play for the North African nation and birthplace of his parents but the initiative would require the Paris based government to remove his French nationality.
However, any drive to commence such a bureaucratic process was met with a lukewarm response from Algeria head coach Djamel Belmadi. Speaking to DZ Foot, the "Fennecs" boss started: "I have players such as (Bagdad) Bounedjah, Islam (Slimani), (Andy) Delort (Hillal) and Soudani. I'm more than happy with the strikers at my disposal".
Algeria are current holders of the Africa Cup of Nations after their Cairo win over Senegal this summer and the Desert Foxes currently top their qualification group ahead of AFCON 2021.
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