Karim Benzema handed recall back to France team since 2015 after alleged sex-tape blackmail of former team-mate Mathieu Valbuena - Report Minds Karim Benzema handed recall back to France team since 2015 after alleged sex-tape blackmail of former team-mate Mathieu Valbuena | Report Minds

Karim Benzema handed recall back to France team since 2015 after alleged sex-tape blackmail of former team-mate Mathieu Valbuena

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France boss Didier Deschamps has sensationally included Karim Benzema in his Euro 2020 squad following six years in international wilderness.
The Real Madrid striker's inclusion in France's 26-man Euros squad - which L'Equipe earlier on Tuesday suggested could be in the pipeline - ahead of friendlies against Wales and Bulgaria at the beginning of June has grabbed all the headlines following years in exile.


The experienced striker has been cast aside by manager Deschamps since 2015 following his alleged role in the sex-tape blackmail of former France team-mate Mathieu Valbuena.

Benzema is suspected of encouraging Valbuena to co-operate with blackmailers, who threatened to release an intimate video in which he featured.

Investigators who charged Benzema believe he was approached by a childhood friend to act as an intermediary and convince Valbuena to deal directly with the blackmailers. Instead, Valbuena informed the police. 

When the story broke, Benzema faced a deluge of criticism and then-Prime Minister Manuel Valls said the former Lyon player had 'no place' in the national team. He had been unable to repair relations and return for his country until now.

Benzema has been joined in France's squad by Premier League stars Paul Pogba, Hugo Lloris, Kurt Zouma, N'Golo Kante, Olivier Giroud, Lucas Digne and Moussa Sissoko - while the usual suspects Kylian Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann, Raphael Varane, Presnel Kimpembe have also been included.

FRANCE'S 26-MAN EUROS SQUAD 
Goalkeepers: Hugo Lloris (Tottenham); Mike Maignan (Lille); Steve Mandanda (Marseille)

Defenders: Lucas Digne (Everton); Leo Dubois (Lyon); Lucas Hernandez (Bayern Munich); Presnel Kimpembe (Paris Saint-Germain); Jules Kounde (Sevilla); Clement Lenglet (Barcelona); Benjamin Pavard (Bayern Munich); Raphael Varane (Real Madrid); Kurt Zouma (Chelsea)

Midfielders: N'Golo Kante (Chelsea); Thomas Lemar (Atletico Madrid); Paul Pogba (Manchester United); Adrien Rabiot (Juventus); Moussa Sissoko (Tottenham); Corentin Tolisso (Bayern Munich)

Forwards: Wissam Ben Yedder (Monaco); Karim Benzema (Real Madrid); Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich); Ousmane Dembele (Barcelona); Olivier Giroud (Chelsea); Antoine Griezmann (Barcelona); Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain); Marcus Thuram (Borussia Moenchengladbach)

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