French forward Karim Benzema recently commented on his now confirmed transfer to Saudi Arabian club Al-Ittihad, stating that he will do everything to win with his new club.
The 35-year-old recently ended his 14-year spell with Spanish giants Real Madrid to secure a lucrative deal with Saudi Pro League champions Al-Ittihad.
Benzema, whose contract with Real Madrid was due to expire this summer, has now opted for a new challenge away from Europe.
With the move, he became the latest big-name addition to the Saudi Arabian league, after former Madrid teammate Cristiano Ronaldo secured a move to Al-Nassr in December last year. Reacting to his unveiling as a new Al-Ittihad player, the veteran French striker stated his willingness to help the Saudi Arabian side win more trophies.
Speaking during an interview, Benzema said:
“It's a new challenge for me, a new life and I can't wait to start training. I will do everything I can to win more trophies, score more goals, to show my talent, to please the fans, the club, the president and everyone here.“
Benzema will bring a lot more eyeballs to the Saudi Pro League as they try to attract top stars from across European clubs.
Karim Benzema heaps praise on Cristiano Ronaldo after joining Al-Ittihad
The Saudi Arabian league received a huge jump in popularity after the addition of Ronaldo last year. Benzema's arrival should have a similar impact as well. The 35-year-old Frenchman has reportedly signed a three-year deal which could see him earn almost €200 million per year.
Following his unveiling, the French striker was quick to reference his former teammate, Ronaldo, who plays for Al-Nassr. Benzema said:
“Al Ittihad is a new challenge for me. It's a good league and there are many good players. Cristiano Ronaldo is already here, he is a friend who shows that Saudi Arabia is starting to get ahead and I am here to win as I did in Europe.”
Both players spent a significant amount of time together as teammates at Real Madrid. It will be interesting to see them competing against each other in the Saudi Pro League next season.