Barcelona Transfer News: Karim Benzema Revelation Made Amid Real Madrid RumoursNovember 9, 2015
Barcelona reportedly had a deal in place to sign Karim Benzema in 2008 before the planned signing was shelved due to worries over the influence of the Frenchman's entourage.
According to Santi Gimenez in AS, "worrying reports" about Benzema's personality brought an end to Barcelona's mooted plans to sign the talented striker from Lyon.
Gimenez's report indicated that Benzema was seen as an ideal replacement for Samuel Eto'o by Barca's technical director at the time, Txiki Begiristain.
The France international eventually ended up moving to Barca's arch-rivals Real Madrid in 2009 and he has been excellent for Los Blancos during his six seasons at the Bernabeu.
However, reports have again emerged linking him with a potential move to Premier League club Arsenal, with Spanish outlet Fichajes (via the Telegraph) indicating Benzema may be looking for a move away amid his involvement in the ongoing Mathieu Valbuena sex-tape scandal.
The Blaugrana reportedly got as far as agreeing a €30 million (£21.4 million) transfer fee for the then-20-year-old Benzema, with Begiristain having seen him score the winner in a Coupe de France quarter-final against Metz.
David Villa eventually came in as the man to replace Eto'o, the Spaniard joining Barca in 2010 from Valencia for £34.2 million.
He was succeeded by Luis Suarez, who has formed a devastating attacking trio with Lionel Messi and Neymar which returned La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League triumphs last season.
It would have been fascinating to see how Benzema fit in at the Camp Nou, but now that he has spent so many years at Real it is all but impossible to foresee him making a move to Barcelona.
Even if he does indeed want to move away from Madrid—unlikely considering his summer insistence that Real is his home—a switch to the Premier League is a much more likely prospect.
Real will not want him to depart the club, though, as they need him in the squad.
Alongside Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale he forms a similarly effective trio to Neymar, Messi and Suarez, and their form will be essential if Rafael Benitez's side are to win the La Liga title this season.