When Karim Benzema eventually leaves Real Madrid, he will leave a huge void that Los Blancos will find very difficult to fill.
Karim Benzema has had a spectacular career at Real Madrid. He has played alongside some of the very best in the business and has gone shoulder to shoulder against the cream of the crop and come out on top.
The Frenchman has won numerous honours at the club, including five Champions League titles, three La Liga titles and two Copa Del Reys. He is Real Madrid's all-time top assist provider and fifth top goalscorer of all time.
Karim Benzema has seen many high-profile players come and go but he has stayed committed to Real Madrid and even at the age of 33, he seems to be going from strength to strength.
The Real Madrid no.9 has scored 27 goals and provided seven assists in 38 appearances across all competitions this term. Karim Benzema still has a few years left in his tank but as he is not going to get any younger, it is high time Real Madrid lined up a replacement for him.
Without further ado, let's take a look at five players who can replace Karim Benzema at Real Madrid.
5 players who can replace Karim Benzema at Real Madrid
#5 Mauro Icardi - Paris Saint-Germain
Mauro Icardi has not had the best of seasons at Paris Saint-Germain. But we have seen what he can do when he is at his best from his time at Inter Milan. The Argentine has managed to score 12 goals and provide three assists in 22 appearances this season.
However, it is important to note that seven of those appearances have come from the bench. When given a steady run of games, Mauro Icari can be as lethal as any striker on the planet. His finishing is immaculate and has great aerial ability as well. Additionally, he is very good at holding on to the ball.
If Paris Saint-Germain are successful in their efforts to keep Moise Kean beyond the end of the season, then there's every chance that they will try to sell Mauro Icardi. He will also be a much cheaper option than the other players on this list.
#4 Harry Kane - Tottenham Hotspur
There is no doubt that Harry Kane is one of the best strikers in the world. Even in an underperforming Tottenham Hotspur side, Harry Kane has scored and set up goals at a prolific rate. The Englishman's overall game is very similar to that of Karim Benzema's.
Like Karim Benzema, Kane is a well-rounded footballer whose playmaking skills are almost at par with his finishing. Despite the negative football that Spurs have been playing under Jose Mourinho, Harry Kane has scored 26 goals and provided 15 assists from 40 appearances this season.
The only issue with Harry Kane is that he is 27-years-old now and is at his peak. So Real Madrid will be back hunting for another world-class striker in, say, three or four years again.
#3 Lautaro Martinez - Inter Milan
Romelu Lukaku has been a beast up top for Inter Milan but it would be criminal to overlook his strike partner Lautaro Martinez's contribution to the Nerazzuri's title charge this term.
At 23-years-old, Lautaro Martinez offers a long-term solution to Real Madrid. His style of play could be a bit of a departure from Karim Benzema's but Martinez will complement the rest of the Real Madrid attack incredibly well. He is pacy, packs a bag of tricks and is a really good finisher.
The Argentine international has scored 17 goals and provided six assists in 42 appearances for Antonio Conte's side this term and is slowly becoming the finished product.
Inter Milan are in a poor financial condition in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic and reports suggest that they could be forced to sell Martinez in the summer. If that's the case then Real Madrid should try to take advantage of this window of opportunity in case they cannot land either of the next two players on the list.
#2 Erling Braut Haaland - Borussia Dortmund
Erling Braut Haaland really needs no introduction at this point. He is simply the most sought-after striker in Europe and for good reason. The 20-year-old Norwegian is a freak of nature and he just cannot seem to stop scoring.
Haaland is a generational talent and it's very rare that we see such natural born goal getters blossoming before even hitting 20 years of age. Erling Haaland has scored a whopping 39 goals in 38 appearances across all competitions for the Bundesliga outfit in addition to providing seven assists.
Haaland has his entire career ahead of him and if Real Madrid can sign him in the summer, they won't have to think about getting another striker for a decade or so. That's how it worked out with Karim Benzema and Haaland is one of the best strikers in the world already.
Borussia Dortmund are in no rush to sell him though and will demand a sum in the ballpark of €150 million for the youngster. However, there is a clause in his contract that will kick in next summer which will bring Haaland's release clause down to €70 million.
#1 Kylian Mbappe - Paris Saint-Germain
The heir-apparent to the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe is an unstoppable force. Mbappe's pace and ability on the ball is currently second to none and once the Frenchman gets past defenders, there is simply no catching him.
His movement, dribbling and finishing are all world-class and Mbappe has been a nightmare to come up against for defenders everywhere. He has been particularly impressive in the UEFA Champions League, where he scored a hat-trick against Barcelona in the Round of 16 before bagging a brace against Bayern Munich in the quarter-finals.
The 23-year-old has scored 37 goals and provided 10 assists in 42 appearances across all competitions this season and is one of the main reasons why Paris Saint-Germain are favourites to win the Champions League this term.
Like Erling Haaland, Mbappe won't come for cheap. Mbappe's current contract expires next summer and Real Madrid might want to be patient and see if he signs a contract extension as otherwise they could sign him on a free.