‘A little bit also ours’ – Carlo Ancelotti wants Karim Benzema Ballon d’Or win after Real Madrid Clasico goal

Carlo Ancelotti said he hopes to see Karim Benzema pick up the 2022 Ballon d’Or and that his Real Madrid team-mates should take a share of the credit if the striker claims the prestigious award.

The France international is the hot favourite to win the annual prize at Monday’s ceremony after firing his club to a La Liga and Champions League double last season.

Benzema has struggled for fitness and form at the start of 2022/23, but scored in Sunday’s 3-1 Clasico win over Barcelona to send Real top and earn plaudits from his manager.

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“As I said yesterday, I saw him much better during training. Clearly his condition is going to improve every day,” Ancelotti said.

“He played a good game, he scored a goal, he was important in the game. Tomorrow hopefully he can win the Ballon d’Or and we are going to congratulate him because a little bit of that Ballon is also ours.”

Benzema, Federico Valverde and Rodrygo were on target for Ancelotti’s side at the Bernabeu, while Ferran Torres netted for the Catalans.

The result saw the Merengues pull three points clear of Barca at the top of the standings, with the two rivals looking set to battle it out for the title.

However, Ancelotti dismissed the notion that the win was worth more than three points.

“No, it’s not one more point, it’s just three. It’s three points we take away from the most credible rival in this competition in this season,” said the Italian.

“Barcelona are a strong team which has many weapons and we took three points from them. And nothing more. The season is very long, there are a lot of games. Obviously, we are happy with the game we played but nothing more.”

The defeat continued a poor recent run of form for Barcelona, who are on the verge of a damaging Champions League exit after picking up one point from their last three group games.

Xavi Hernandez’s side have picked up one win in their last four games in all competitions ahead of their La Liga clash with Villarreal on Thursday.

“We are very disappointed, very disillusioned, very sad,” said Xavi.

“It’s not a good day. But we are in a negative streak and we have to change it straight away.

“It’s only three points, La Liga is very long but this is not a consolation. At the end we have to do better in our matches, be more mature and compete much better.”

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13/10/2022 AT 09:45

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