Karim Benzema has been one of the few Real Madrid players who can hold their head up high after this season, with the Frenchman having dominated Los Blancos‘ statistics in this campaign.
The 31-year-old has scored the most goals, played the most games, disputed the most minutes, won the most matches, and is the player who has started the most games – Benzema is Madrid‘s MVP in what has otherwise been a season to forget.
With 30 goals in all competitions, Benzema is Madrid‘s top goalscorer, his second-best record since arriving at the Santiago Bernabeu, and he is only two goals off his best tally from 2011/12. The departure of Cristiano Ronaldo created a void in terms of goals, with Benzema being the only player to step up in a goalscoring sense. In fact, the No.9’s 30 goals are more than the 26 Ronaldo has managed in his debut season with Juventus.
Madrid‘s second highest goalscorer is Gareth Bale on 14, less than half of Benzema‘s total, and the Welshman is followed by Sergio Ramos on 11. Benzema has scored Madrid‘s last eight goals, something never done before at Los Blancos. In fact, the Frenchman beat Ferenc Puskas‘ record from the 1961/62 league season where he scored his team’s last seven goals.
50 games out of 52
Last Sunday against Athletic Club, Benzema made his 50th appearance of the season out of a possible 52 in all competitions. He has played in every match in the Champions League, LaLiga Santander, Club World Cup and the European Super Cup. The only two games he missed came in the Copa del Rey. No other played in the squad has played more than the French striker, with only Luka Modric (43) and the duo of Ramos and Lucas Vazquez (42) coming fairly close.
Has disputed more minutes than anyone else
Benzema has not only played more games than anyone else at Real Madrid, but he has played the most minutes, too. During the clash against Athletic, the No.9 surpassed the 4,000-minute mark – 4,048 to be exact – and it should be no surprise that he has played so much, given his excellent form and luck with injuries. All three coaches at Los Blancos this season – Julen Lopetegui, Santiago Solari and Zinedine Zidane – have made the most of Benzema, while Ramos (3,661′) and Raphael Varane (3,415′) close out the podium in terms of minutes disputed.
20 straight matches as a starter
The importance of Benzema this season has been shown in the following fact: the 31-year-old has started the last 20 matches for Madrid in LaLiga Santander, the Copa del Rey and the Champions League – not being substituted in any of them. The last game he did not feature in was back on January 16 against Leganes in the Copa del Rey.