Benzema has stepped up to the plate though and, although he obviously isn’t Cristiano Ronaldo, he has matured with age to become the spearhead that his side needs.
With other senior figures at the club such as Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane following Ronaldo out the door in recent years, Benzema has become a leader in the Santiago Bernabeu changing room and one that the young talents, such as Vinicius Junior, can look up to.
The 34-year-old had to alter his game again when Ronaldo left and he is now the complete forward that fires in the goals, links up play and provides assists. With 22 goals in 25 games so far this season, he is only two goals away from equalling his career-best of 24 goals in 2015/16. Across all competitions, his 32 goals are already the same number as his best season a decade ago in 2011/12. He also has 11 assists in the league this season, more than any other player.
Perhaps the exit of Ronaldo and the fall from grace that Gareth Bale has had has cast a closer eye on Benzema’s overall performances, and there is no doubt that in recent years, the Frenchman has shone, scoring 87 La Liga goals since the start of 2018/19.