Didier Deschamps, the head coach of defending champions France, said on Sunday that Karim Benzema will not be substituted in the World Cup squad due to injury.
The Ballon d’Or winner injured his left thigh during practice on Saturday, dealing a severe blow to France’s hopes of bringing home the trophy in Qatar.
Despite having until Monday under FIFA’s rules to request a replacement for the Real Madrid forward, Deschamps stated he will not do so.
Even though Benzema’s setback was “not nice,” Deschamps told France’s TF1 that he was confident in the depth of his squad.
“However, we have an objective and a strong team with players who are aware of what’s ahead. In them, I have confidence.”
Benzema had been out for a month with an injury, and Deschamps was questioned about how the French team had treated him.
He added, “I know you’re looking for controversy.” But everything is under control; he didn’t even accelerate or shot when the injury occurred.
“Anyone might have that kind of a problem and get hurt.”
Raphael Varane, the team’s central defender, will be available for Tuesday’s opening game against Australia, according to Deschamps.
The Manchester United defender has been out since October 22 due to injury, but on Saturday, he participated in team practice for the first time.