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SPORTS UPDATE

France coach Didier Deschamps speaks on Benzema returning to World Cup squad

France head coach, Didier Deschamps, has played down speculation striker Karim Benzema could return to Les Bleus’ World Cup squad.

According to Deschamps, he is unaware of the growing speculation surrounding Benzema.

Benzema had been struggling with injury going into the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The Real Madrid star was forced to pull out altogether of the World Cup due to injury and Deschamps did not call up a replacement even though he was able to.

Reports had emerged that Benzema is still on the list of players registered for the World Cup and could return before the tournament is over in Qatar.

But Deschamps has now rubbished the suggestion, insisting that he is delighted with the players at his disposal.

Asked in a roundabout way about the speculation surrounding Benzema, Deschamps said at a press conference ahead of France’s World Cup tie with Tunisia on Wednesday: “Wow. Well, I am not sure [what to say], that is really not something that I am thinking about.

“You seem to know a lot about the situation but I haven’t really been following who has been saying what.

“I talked to Karim after he left and you know the situation, and we heard how long it was going to take for him to recover.

“So I don’t really know what you are trying to imply. I have 24 players in my squad and I am happy with the squad I have.

“Some players are missing, Kimpembe and Pogba are missing too, and of course, I talk with them.

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