Deschamps rules out return for Benzema

France boss Didier Deschamps has ruled out a shock World Cup return for crocked star Karim Benzema.

Ballon d’Or winner Benzema was left devastated after being ruled out of Qatar 2022 with a thigh problem. The striker has jetted to the Indian Ocean Island of La Reunion for some rest and relaxation, amid speculation he could be recalled to the France squad.

Under FIFA rules those players included in initial squads but ruled out injured can still be called up once fit again.

But Deschamps appeared to pour cold water on the chances of a reunion with the Real Madrid superstar when asked about it ahead of his side’s final group game with Tunisia in Doha on Tuesday.

Deschamps insisted it is something he is not considering at this point in time.

He said: “It’s not something I’m thinking about now. I spoke to Benzema after he left the training camp. I leave it to you if you want to have a debate about it. The thought hasn’t crossed my mind.”

Benzema is expected to return to Madrid in the next week to join his team-mates in a training camp ahead of the resumption of the La Liga season.

The 34-year-old won the Champions League and the Ballon d’Or in the last six months – and had been desperate to round of 2022 with the chance to land what would have been a second World Cup triumph with the reigning world champions.

Deschamps, meanwhile, would rather focus on the players he does have available and has hailed the impact of Antoine Griezmann in Qatar.

France became the first team to book their place in the knockout stages following last weekend’s 2-1 win over Denmark and Deschamps believes Griezmann has been the star of the show so far.

Deschamps said: “We’ve had two games, so it’s difficult to judge on two games. But he’s capable of doing much more in a role that suits him well.

Deschamps coud ring the changes, but admitted he still wanted to win to finish the group stage off on a high. He added: “We are going through to next round, so we don’t need to go for the victory. –Mirror

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