sport

Lloris: Benzema is special

Hugo Lloris considers Karim Benzema to be 'a special player' and the 'key man' in France's World Cup campaign.

Having been overlooked in 2010, the Real Madrid striker is looking to make up for lost time in Brazil.

He made the perfect start in France's Group E clash with Honduras on Sunday, bagging a brace and coming within the width of the post of pipping Thomas Muller to the first hat-trick of the finals.

Benzema is now being backed to go from strength to strength, showcasing on a global stage that at the age of 26 he has matured into the fearsome frontman he was tipped to be at Lyon and has shown that he can be in Madrid.

Lloris said: \"When you spend five years at a club like his, you have to be a special player.

\"This was Karim's first game at the World Cup after being left out in 2010 and it was crucial for him he started the competition well.

\"He is a decisive player for France, our key man, and he has shown that he is ready to take this opportunity.

\"The World Cup only comes every four years, so when you get the chance to play you have to enjoy the possibility to be at your best level and do everything for the team.

\"This competition is the perfect platform for Karim to show everyone who he is and what he can do - and that is exactly what he has done.\"

Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper Lloris added: \"He has just won the Champions League with Real Madrid and is playing with such confidence.

\"He did well during France's preparation games and was in excellent condition to start against Honduras.

\"He scored two goals and is a very big talent.\"