Real Madrid confirm Benzema's Bernabeu exit
Real Madrid have confirmed that Karim Benzema will leave the club this summer after 14 years at the Bernabeu.
The Frenchman's imminent departure was confirmed by Los Blancos this morning in a statement amid reports of a big-money move to Saudi Arabia.
His contract in the Spanish capital expires at the end of the month, and he capped off his incredible time at the club with an equalising penalty in the 72nd minute against Athletic Bilbao.
A statement read: "Real Madrid and our captain Karim Benzema have agreed to end his brilliant and unforgettable period as a player for our club.
"Real Madrid wants to show its gratitude and all its affection for who is already one of our greatest legends.
"Karim's career at Real Madrid has been an example of behavior and professionalism, and has represented the values of our club. Karim has earned the right to decide his future.
"Madridistas and all the fans around the world have enjoyed his magical and unique football, which has made him one of the great myths of our club and one of the great legends of world football.
"Real Madrid is and will always be his home, and we wish him and all his family the best in this new phase of his life."
Benzema, 35, joined Real from Lyon in 2009 and has played a key role in one of the most successful periods in the club's history.
His honours included five Champions League titles, four LaLiga crowns, three Copa del Rey trophies and the 2022 Ballon d'Or, cementing him as one of the game's modern-day icons.
A separate farewell event will be held next Tuesday, June 6, at Real Madrid City with club president Florentino Perez set to be in attendance.
Benzema is widely expected to join Saudi Pro League outift Al-Ittihad, where he would square off domestically against former Madrid team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo.
Reports have suggested the Frenchman will put pen-to-paper on a deal worth over £340million.