Chelsea handed fresh transfer boost in Karim Benzema battle

Former France international Karim Benzema has been heavily linked with a move to the Premier League, having asked Al-Ittihad to allow him to leave temporarily after just six months in the Saudi Pro League.

Karim Benzema - Al Ittihad

The 36-year-old striker only moved to the Saudi Pro League in the past summer transfer window, when he decided to end his glittering career with Real Madrid on a free transfer. He earned legendary status at Real Madrid, lifting four La Liga titles and five Champions League trophies during his more than decade-long stay in Spain.

However, the move to the Middle East has not worked out as Karim Benzema hoped, with Al-Ittihad putting in a miserable defence of their league title this season and currently lie seventh in the table.

Chelsea are reportedly among the clubs monitoring the 2022 Ballon d’Or winner’s situation at the Saudi club, along with Premier League rivals Manchester United and Arsenal. However, both Man United and Arsenal have seemingly pulled out of the race to sign the Frenchman due to budgetary problems, potentially leaving the chance for Chelsea to swoop in unchallenged.

Chelsea could do well with a player of Karim Benzema’s stature on loan

Some supporters are still worried that Mauricio Pochettino’s team needs a new striker, even after Chelsea scored six past Middlesbrough on Tuesday evening to advance to the Carabao Cup final, where they will meet Liverpool.

The Blues have been linked with moves for Victor Osimhen and Ivan Toney in recent weeks but they are only being mentioned as options for the summer transfer window. Pochettino’s club has made no secret of their desire to sign a new striker in this transfer window as Nicolas Jackson and Armando Broja have failed to impress, while Christopher Nkunku has spent the entire debut campaign at Stamford Bridge on the sidelines.

Unexpectedly, Karim Benzema’s future is up in the air at Al-Ittihad, only six months after arriving in the Middle East. The Frenchman has netted 12 goals in 20 games for Al-Ittihad but somehow failed to help his club mount a serious title defence. The 36-year-old has a stellar goalscoring record in Europe, having netted over 400 goals.

Chelsea need a potent goalscorer to bolster their attacking ranks for the rest of the season, and Benzema would provide them with that. Young strikes such as Jackson and Broja could hugely benefit from the ex-Real Madrid star’s pedigree and bags of experience too. So, a six-month loan for the veteran striker makes a lot of sense for the Pensioners.

At this stage, it is not yet known if Chelsea will firm up their interest and lodge a bid for Benzema.

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