Lyon recently revealed that Benzema’s contract had a 100m Euro ‘get-out’ clause. Assuming that this is for non-French clubs instead of just for French clubs, it effectively prices out any European club from buying the player anytime soon.
The price hasn’t stopped the press from speculating on Benzema’s future though, with Manchester City and Manchester United among the teams mentioned as potential suitors. 100m Euros or not, there are very few teams in Europe who would be a) able to afford Benzema and b) be an attractive alternative to Lyon.
With his price-tag, it’s back to the usual suspects – Real Madrid, Manchester United, Chelsea or Manchester City.
Benzema to Madrid
They’re big enough to attract Benzema and with Raul and Ruud getting old, a more likely target than Huntelaar. The price is a stumbling block but next season Real will be looking for a winger and a forward, and Benzema would give them the glamour that only a Ronaldo or Kaka could outdo.
Benzema to Manchester United
Ferguson was interested in Benzema at the end of the 06/07 season but nothing came out of that with Lyon pricing out the English champions. It was much of the same story this summer and with Berbatov at United I don’t see Ferguson going after Benzema unless the Manchester United refuse to sign Tevez, a highly unlikely scenario.
Benzema to Chelsea
Quite possible and could feature a player exchange as well. Drogba and Anelka aren’t exactly spring chickens and Chelsea will be looking to bring in a striker next summer. As one of the two clubs who can actually afford the 100m, Chelsea would get their man if they were interested.
Benzema to Manchester City
They have the money but not the attraction. A lot will depend on how City fare this season and whether they can qualify for the Champions League or not. Benzema doesn’t have the problems Robinho had at Madrid (he’s well-loved at Lyon and has a good contract) so I don’t see him leaving for Man City next summer.