Karim Benzema's continuity at Real Madrid has been uncertain throughout this season. The Frenchman has been tempted by several clubs as his current contract expires in June 2023.
The striker has decided not to renew his contract despite a few months in which it seemed that Carlo Ancelotti had convinced the 35-year-old to stay for one more season.
There are several rumours about his new destination but he has recently been linked with a move to Saudi Arabia to follow in the footsteps of his former teammate Cristiano Ronaldo, who signed for Al Nassr in December.
The former Lyon footballer has an offer from Saudi Arabia which he reportedly spoke to Florentino Perez about on Wednesday. Real Madrid finally announced the departure of one of the most important players in their history through a statement posted on their social media on Sunday.
The 2022 Ballon d'Or winner has scored 353 goals in 647 competitive matches for the Spanish side and will always be a Real Madrid legend.
"Real Madrid C. F. and our captain Karim Benzema have agreed to put an end to his brilliant and unforgettable period as a player of our club. Real Madrid would like to show their gratitude and affection to the man who is already one of our greatest legends," reads the statement.
"Karim Benzema joined our club in 2009, at just 21 years of age, and has been a key player in this golden era of our history. During the fourteen seasons in which he has defended our crest and our colours, he has won 25 titles, a record number for Real Madrid: 5 Champions League, 5 Club World Cups, 4 European Super Cups, 4 La Ligas, 3 Copa del Rey and 4 Spanish Super Cups.
"Karim Benzema is the current UEFA Ballon d'Or and UEFA Player of the Year, as well as being included in the FIFA FIFPRO XI and winning the Pichichi Trophy 2022. Awards received after one of the most extraordinary seasons in our history, especially in the Champions League, in which our captain played memorable matches that contributed to Real Madrid winning the 14th European Cup in Paris, being the top scorer of this competition with 15 goals.
"Karim Benzema is the fifth player who has worn our shirt the most times with 647 appearances, and is Real Madrid's second all-time top scorer with 353 goals. He is also Real Madrid's second all-time top scorer in both La Liga and the European Cup. He is also the fourth top scorer in the Champions League in the history of this competition and the fourth top scorer in La Liga history.
"Karim Benzema's career at Real Madrid has been an example of behaviour and professionalism, and has represented the values of our club. Karim Benzema has earned the right to decide his future. The madridistas and all the fans of the world have enjoyed his magical and unique football, which has made him one of the great legends of our club and one of the great legends of world football.
"Real Madrid are and always will be his home, and he wishes him and his family all the best in this new stage of his life. Next Tuesday 6th June, at 12:00 noon, an institutional act of homage and farewell to Karim Benzema will take place at Ciudad Real Madrid, with the presence of our president Florentino Perez," conlcudes the statement.