Benzema hints at Real departure

Benzema, 30, joined Real in 2009 for a reported fee of  €41m (R648m) from Lyon and has won 16 major titles over the past nine seasons.

Despite his indifferent relationship with the Los Blancos faithful, his return of 193 goals and 114 assists in 412 appearances makes for exceptional reading.

And with his long-time teammate Ronaldo appearing to be edging towards an exit, Benzema has fuelled rumours he will follow suit.

"Nine years ago I first wore the Real Madrid shirt, thanks to the President, the whole club and the players and all the coaches with whom I met along the way," he wrote on Twitter.

"I've been proud to defend the club badge and am eternally grateful always #HalaMadrid."

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