Benzema named French Footballer of the Year

Karim Benzema has been named the French Footballer of the Year for 2012 ahead of Franck Ribery and a host of others, repeating his success of twelve months ago.

The Real Madrid striker enjoyed an excellent 2011-12 season, scoring 21 times in La Liga as Los Blancos sealed a league championship, and spoke of his pride when collecting his award from Zinedine Zidane in Madrid.

“I am proud and happy that this will please my family,” the 24-year-old France international said in a message to the award show on Telefoot, which he did not attend.

Benzema beat Champions League runner-up, Bayern Munich star Ribery into second place, whilst Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris came third, Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud fourth, and Mathieu Valbuena of Marseille completed the top five.

Rene Girard, who led Montpellier to its first Ligue 1 championship last season, was named coach of the year with Francis Gillot of Bordeaux in second, just ahead of Olympique Lyonnais trainer Remi Garde.

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