Benzema delivers United blow
Karim Benzema insists he will stay with Lyon next season, despite speculation linking him with a move to Man United.
By Peter Fraser
Last Updated: 25/02/08 5:49pm
Lyon striker Karim Benzema insists he will stay in France next season, despite speculation linking him with a summer move to Manchester United or Barcelona.
The highly-rated French international has hit 26 goals for Lyon this season, including the Ligue 1 side's goal in their UEFA Champions League last 16 first-leg clash with United last week.
Benzema's form is thought to have caught the eye of United manager Sir Alex Ferguson and Barcelona boss Frank Rijkaard, but the 20-year-old is adamant he will stay with Lyon for at least another season.
"I have a contract with Lyon until 2012," he told StarAfric.com. "I signed an extension last June.
"There will be plenty of time for me to think about other clubs in the future.
"I don't know when I will take a decision, but one thing that is certain is that it will not be at the end of this season.
"I will still be playing for Lyon next year. I am just 20-years-old, and I have my future in front of me."
And Benzema has delivered an additional blow to Ferguson as he has revealed he would favour a move to Spain or Italy over England if he was to leave Lyon.
"My style of play would fit in best with the game in Spain, then Italy, and then England - in that order," added Benzema.
"I feel honoured that clubs such as Barcelona are interested in me. But I just concentrate on playing football, and I follow the advice of those close to me.
"I haven't discussed anything with the Lyon president, Jean-Michel Aulas. My agent does that for me - my only job is out on the pitch."