The French, Muslim, made a pilgrimage to Mecca in 2016 and has admitted that he listens to the Qur’an for ten minutes before games. He is an idol of the masses in Riyadh, where faith is a matter of state.
at the gates of the stadium King Fahd of Riyadhalmost all children want to be Karim Benzema. His number ‘9’ is repeated on most shirts, whether men, boys or girls, which also exist. Ben-ze-ma! ben-ze-ma!, the Saudi stands acclaimed him before, during and after the classic against Barcelona, where the most thunderous cry of the previous one was felt when his name appeared in the video markers. The French striker Real Madrid landed in the capital of Saudi Arabia like the biggest star Spanish Super Cup and the current top scorer of the League, but his connection with the local fan goes much further.
Sportingly, until a few years ago Benzema was not the favourite, Cristiano was. But since 2018 is crazy, points out a local soccer fan. That little idolatry that the Arab public now feels with Benzema is directly enhanced by the religion, a matter of state in this part of the world. Football comes first, obviously, but here beliefs make Karim, a Muslim, into mass idol. Much of the blame lies with the footballer himself, who has never hidden his faith and who in 2016 did the ‘umrah‘, a small pilgrimage to Mecca, an act that a Muslim must perform at least once in his life. My faith helps me focus every day gives me strength, declared a few months ago in an interview with vogue saudi.
For all this, Benzema’s presence in Riyadh It was special for both parties, footballer and fan. An injury left him out of the Spanish Super Cup that was played two years ago in Jeddah, the second most important city in Saudi Arabia, and the MVP that he won after the classic made that small thorn that all the protagonists had nailed disappear. I feel very proud and very happy, he answered in the press room when asked about the constant affection that the stands of the King Fahd stadium showed him: Thanks to all the fans. Minutes later, he posted a photo on Instagram with the message Alhamdulilah, What does it mean Praise God. In 2014, in an interview with the newspaper L’Equipe, the French assured that listened to the Koran, the holy book of Islam, for ten minutes before each match. makes me focus, I admitted.
Almost 900 kilometers from Mecca and without knowing what had sounded in his helmets in the moments before the classic, Benzema scored the 23rd goal of his season in a new victory for Madrid against Barcelona. The white team does not give in to its eternal rival and already accumulates five consecutive games winning, the second best streak in his history (he won seven in a row between 1962 and 1965). In those five classics, four of them in the League, Benzema himself, author of two goals and two assists in that period.
The Frenchman, his teammates, the coaching staff and the board got up yesterday surprised by some reactions to 2-3. we deserved the win, assured Benzema at a press conference. Before, Xavi Hernandez had admitted that the game was a turning point for the Catalans and pique declared that Madrid has won in one against. Phrases that had already resonated in the riyadh hilton hotel where the whites stay, but who came to nothing after seeing the Laporta’s speech in the locker room. We are all proud to be from Bara, more than ever. We have shown talent and we have been brave. Thank you. This is the way, master, very good. We just need to start winning, the president pointed out. That last sentence colored a speech that sounded victorious. Let’s see if we are not the ones who have passed to the final…, they commented in the hall of the Hilton.
Reference from elmundo