Karim Benzema has admitted that he tried to emulate Cristiano Ronaldo’s traits in order to help improve his own displays when they were teammates although he acknowledged that its hard to replicate the Portuguese’s consistency. The duo played together for Madrid until Ronaldo’s departure in 2018.
Karim Benzema joined Real Madrid in the summer of 2009 and has slowly but consistently turned into one of the most important striker's in Real Madrid history. The Frenchman enjoyed a career-best year as he led Madrid to La Liga and Champions League glory as he scored 44 goals in 46 appearances across all competitions. The 34-year-old is the favourite to win the Ballon d’Or award this year for his impressive displays. Benzema’s season was the finest individual campaign for the Los Blancos since Cristiano Ronaldo left the side in 2018.
The French striker played more of a supporting role to the mercurial Portuguese while the Manchester United star was at Madrid but Benzema has evolved into one of the best strikers of his generation with his storied career at Madrid. Benzema credited Ronaldo for being an ideal example to study from on the pitch and outlined his ambitions of securing more trophies with Madrid and France.
"When I watched what he[Cristiano Ronaldo] did, I tried to concentrate on his movements: the dribbling, the finishing, the passing, his ball handling, I dissected everything about him. But, then it’s impossible to achieve the same thing. I still have a lot of things in my head. I want to win more titles, more Champions Leagues. And with the national team, the World Cup. That’s all I have as a dream,” Benzema told Onze Mondial.
Benzema also reflected on the obstacles he had to go through during the early periods of his Madrid tenure
“My first season, the first six months, were very difficult, as I was alone and I didn’t speak the language so everything was complicated. I had arrived in a new world, with a new team, a different type of football. Luckily I didn’t give up,” he added.