Soccer  

World Cup: Karim Benzema suffers injury in training

Striker Karim Benzema was forced to leave France’s training session because of an injury on Saturday in what is potentially a major blow for the defending champions three days before their World Cup opener, L’Equipe reported.

The Ballon d’Or winner, who has been struggling with a muscle problem, and central defender Raphael Varane, who is recovering from a knee issue, trained with the squad on Saturday for the first time since they arrived in Qatar.

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L’Equipe said that Benzema did not last the full session after sustaining an injury, the nature and severity of which is not yet known.

France, already without influential midfielders Paul Pogba and N’Golo Kante for the tournament because of injury, open their campaign against Australia in a Group D match on Tuesday.