France’s campaign to retain the FIFA World Cup title suffered a major blow on Saturday (November 19) after striker Karim Benzema pulled out of the tournament due to injury.
According to a statement from the French Football Federation, Benzema suffered a tendon injury during the team’s training in Doha on Saturday.
The injury will keep the 34-year-old Benzema out for at least three weeks, which means he cannot feature in the World Cup.
France kick off their campaign against Australia on Tuesday, November 22.
Benzema joins France’s injury star-studded list that includes Paul Pogba, Ngolo Kante and Presnel Kimpembe, who have all been ruled out of the tournament in Qatar.
With Benzema out, Kylian Mbappe, who was instrumental in France’s triumph during the 2018 World Cup in Russia, will be the main striker for the Les Blues.
Coach Didier Deschamps is expected to call up Monaco striker Wissam Ben Yedder as Benzema’s replacement.