Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has dismissed speculation linking him with a move to Paris Saint-Germain.
The France international acknowledged the quality of players that PSG have been signing in the past couple of years has been high, but believes the Ligue 1 side still have some way to go before they enter the world elite.
“For now, I am at Real and I do not want to leave,” he said to TF1‘s Telefoot, when asked about the PSG rumours. “Paris invests in very good players like Thiago Silva and [Zlatan] Ibrahimovic. But it takes time.
“They must first win the championship and they reach the last 16 of the Champions League to achieve the same level of the big clubs.”
Benzema also played down any personal unrest over Gonzalo Higuain being favoured by Los Blancos boss Jose Mourinho up front this season.
“It is true that I have less playing time than last year,” the 24-year-old continued. “But I am someone who battles, and that’s from the beginning of my career. I will continue like this with the aim of playing more and scoring more.
“There was no discussion with Mourinho. I respect his choice [to play Higuain more]. When he calls me, I try to be decisive.
“I can finish my career at Real – if it’s possible, we’ll see. For now, I feel very comfortable here.”
Benzema believes the French public and media should not slate France team-mate Samir Nasri so heavily and admitted the idea of captaining his country is alluring.
“Criticism is part of football. Sometimes it is more than unfair, I think. [In regards to] Nasri, we must leave him alone. We must give him our trust. I think he can still give good things to the Bleus. Because he has the ability.
“Captain of the French team? That’s a lot of responsibility, but I’m ready. But I do not make the call, but if the coach asked me, I’d say yes.”