The Solari era began with Karim Benzema as a starter.
One more coach who has confidence in the Frenchman, and indeed, the only one who questioned his ownership of the centre-forward role was Jose Mourinho.
Solari started him against Melilla and then repeated the decision in his league premiere against Valladolid.
Two decisions accompanied by a compliment.
“Karim is superb in his position.”
Benzema seems to have continuity once more, a tradition that began with Manuel Pellegrini, who also opted for the Frenchman in his first starting XI.
It was against Depor and the striker played from start to finish with Raul, Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka.
However, that year he would end up flirting with being a substitute after an injury.
Then came Mourinho, the only one who didn’t have him as a starter in his first game as coach of Madrid.
He benched him against Mallorca and opted for Gonzalo Higuain instead, a decision that would start a long battle between the pair for the starting spot.
Undoubtedly, it was the most delicate time for the Frenchman at the club, but he still scored 78 goals in the 150 games played for Mou.
With Ancelotti he had free access.
The Italian not only lined him up in the first match he led to Madrid, but he made him the regular starter.
In addition, he didn’t hesitate to praise him on many occasions.
“He is the best player in the world in his position,” the Italian said.
Ancelotti also wanted to sign him this season for Napoli.
Untouchable since 2013
Rafa Benitez also gave his full confidence to Benzema.
“He is a fundamental footballer for us,” the Spaniard said.
And what about Zidane when he took over from Benitez?
In fact, Zizou said it all: “Whoever doesn’t like Karim doesn’t like football.”
He started under Julen Lopetegui in his tenth season at Real Madrid, and it’s a situation that won’t change with Solari.