Manchester United has dismissed the possibility of signing Karim Benzema to address their goal-scoring challenges.
Despite being linked with the 36-year-old former Real Madrid striker, United has not approached Benzema’s representatives for a move to Old Trafford.
The decision is attributed to concerns about his age and a reported annual wage of £86 million.
Benzema recently joined Saudi Pro-League side Al-Ittihad, concluding a remarkable 14-year stint at Real Madrid.
However, a falling out with manager Marcelo Gallardo arose when Benzema failed to report for the team’s pre-season training camp. Gallardo made it clear that the five-time Champions League winner was not welcome to join the squad during their Dubai trip.
Benzema, who scored 12 goals in 20 appearances for Al-Ittihad, now faces an uncertain future but expresses a desire to return to Europe.
Manchester United, grappling with a goal-scoring crisis, is actively seeking a loan deal for a striker this month.
With Marcus Rashford and Rasmus Hojlund struggling for consistent goals, and Anthony Martial sidelined due to form and fitness issues, the team has explored the loan market. Financial Fair Play rules limit them to temporary deals.
Erik ten Hag, United’s manager, acknowledged the importance of considering such loan opportunities, citing the positive impact of previous loans like Marcel Sabitzer and Wout Weghorst.
Chelsea and Arsenal are also in the striker market, but it remains uncertain if they would consider offering Benzema an escape route from Saudi Arabia.
Benzema, with an illustrious career that includes 25 major trophies in Madrid and 97 caps for France before his international retirement in December 2022, is evaluating his options amid the current situation.
In a similar context, former Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson is looking to leave Saudi Arabia after just six months at Al-Ettifaq, with Ajax expressing interest in signing the midfielder, as confirmed by coach John van ‘t Schip.