Karim Benzema has received the Alfredo di Stefano award that distinguishes the best player of last season’s La Liga campaign.
The Frenchman, alongside Sergio Ramos and Thibaut Courtois, was instrumental in helping Real Madrid to the title. Benzema scored 21 goals in the league and has continued his run coming into this new season.
Benzema is the first player to be awarded this award aside from Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo since Raul, another fine Madrid marksman.
He’s also recently become the foreign player with the most matches played for Madrid, hitting 529 this season to overtake Roberto Carlos.
“It means a lot,” Benzema said in his acceptance speech in comments carried by Marca.
“I feel proud and very happy and it is a reward for the work I’ve done at this club since 2009. It makes me feel very satisfied. I’ve been at Madrid for many years and I’ve always worked to help the team.”
Benzema also touched on displacing Messi and Ronaldo to win the award. “Those two are something else,” he said. They’ve won many individual awards and I’m proud to win ahead of them.”
For Benzema, the key to success is continual improvement. “I make an effort in each training session, always thinking about the next game. My idea is to show every day that I can play for this club, for me the club that’s always been the best in the world.”