KARIM BENZEMA has overtaken Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi and is now the second-oldest player to score 40-plus goals in a single season.
Benzema gave Real Madrid a fighting chance in their Champions League semi-final scoring twice, including a late Panenka penalty to go down 4-3 at Manchester City.
That brace took the Frenchman to 41 goals this season in all competitions for Real Madrid – equalling Ferenc Puskas' record from 1962.
Benzema has achieved this feat at the age of 34 and four months. Puskas was 35 and three months when he notched his fab 41.
Cristiano Ronaldo hit the 40-goal mark for Los Blancos in season when he was 33 in season 2017/18, while the last time Messi netted that magic number was when he was 32 at Barcelona the season after.
Neither have done it since – with Messi sitting on a paltry NINE goals this season for Paris Saint-Germain.
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Benzema has now scored the same number of goals as the games he has played in for the Spanish giants this season.
His best campaign prior to this was in 2011-12 when he bagged 32 goals.
He is the fifth Real Madrid player to score more than 40 goals, joining Ronaldo, Puskas, Hugo Sanchez and Alfredo di Stefano in that Hall of Fame.
But Benzema is still behind Manchester United star Ronaldo on one record – goals in the Champions League knockout stages.
In 2016-17 Ronaldo notched ten times in this stage of the competition. Benzema is currently sitting on nine.
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He will be crowned the top scorer in this season's Champions League however, his two against City taking him past Robert Lewandowski onto 14 goals.
Benzema is the red-hot favourite to win the Ballon d'Or for the first time in his career.
Liverpool's Mo Salah and Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne are likely to be his big rivals.
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