France star Karim Benzema will not be in the World Cup final as he ‘turns down travel offer’

Karim Benzema ‘refuses French President Emmanuel Macron’s offer to take his private plane to the World Cup final, with his relationship with President Didier Deschamps after he had to send him back to his country.

Karim Benzema reportedly turned down the chance to attend the FIFA World Cup Final in Qatar as a bitter feud with Didier Deschamps over his injury continued to escalate.

The Ballon d’Or winner was controversially missed by injury and was expected to miss the reigning champions in a big way, but they have dealt with his absence well and will play their second consecutive final against Argentina.

But according to RMC Sport, Benzema turned down an offer from French President Emmanuel Macron to join him on his presidential plane to Qatar for the match and support his team.

Karim Benzema refused the opportunity to attend the World Cup final in support of France

French President Emmanuel Macron offered to take the star to the final on his private plane

French President Emmanuel Macron offered to take the star to the final on his private plane

Benzema, the Real Madrid striker, was ruled out from participating in the tournament even before it started after suffering a thigh injury in his first training session in Doha.

Spain’s Libertad Digital claimed earlier this week that Benzema was unhappy with the treatment of Deschamps, who allegedly brought the striker home despite an injury that required only minor treatment.

Benzema reportedly only needed three days of treatment at Real Madrid’s training facility before he went on vacation and actually recovered.

L’Equipe claimed on Sunday that Benzema had not been in contact with the French camp since leaving Qatar. They also claim that his relationship with Deschamps, already far from harmonious, is now completely “broken”.

Recent reports suggested the 35-year-old could make a big return to the squad for the match against Argentina, which the player himself rejected and insisted he “didn’t care”.

Deschamps evaded Benzema's questions in the build-up to the final against Argentina

Deschamps evaded Benzema’s questions in the build-up to the final against Argentina

Deschamps appeared furious on Saturday when asked if Benzema could play in the final with Argentina.

He closed his eyes and puffed out his cheeks before saying, “I really don’t want to answer that question.” He let out a smile and quickly said, “Next question.”

But when the president of France was subjected to more questions about Benzema playing or even watching him in Qatar, Deschamps replied: ‘Do you spread the word among foreign journalists? If I don’t answer, you’ll say I’m off.

Paul Pogba traveled to Qatar for the final to take pictures with ITV's Laura Woods

Paul Pogba traveled to Qatar for the final to take pictures with ITV’s Laura Woods

I have players who have been injured before. Cream is one of them. The last to be injured is Lucas Hernandez.

Since then, I’ve got 24 players to manage and you know them. Asking the question in the face of these players is, if I may say so, at least clumsy, if not a little more so.

The group exists. I don’t care about invitations from players, ex-players or injured players. I don’t know who will be there.

Rumors swirled about a return because Benzema is still a registered member of the squad and would be world champions if France retained their trophy from 2018.

Olivier Giroud was impressed by Benzema’s absence, and became his country’s all-time leading goalscorer in the tournament.

But Benzema will not be present at the game even as a spectator, casting doubt on his future international career after he has already missed five and a half years of international football.

Our injured teammates Christopher Nkunku, Paul Pogba, Presnel Kimpembe and N’Golo Kante will be in Qatar.

The former Manchester United star has been seen in pictures posted to Instagram with ITV presenter Laura Woods and former Old Trafford teammate Rio Ferdinand.

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