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Lineker and Benzema trade barbs as Madrid striker accuses presenter of 'spreading hatred'

Lineker suggested Benzema was ‘a tad overrated’ during Madrid’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham a fortnight ago.

Image: PA

KARIM BENZEMA WAS not impressed by Gary Lineker’s suggestion that the French striker is “a tad overrated” during Real Madrid’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham at the Bernabeu a fortnight ago.

Lineker, who played for Madrid’s arch nemeses Barcelona as well as tonight’s opponents, tweeted during October’s group stage fixture:

Is it me or is Benzema a tad overrated? A goal every other game in a team as strong as Real Madrid is nada especial. Decent not great.

Speaking ahead of the return match in Wembley tonight, Benzema took aim at the former England striker, claiming he was “embarrassed” for the 56-year-old BBC and BT Sport presenter.

Benzema suggested former players such as Lineker should show more empathy towards the current crop having experienced many of the same challenges during their careers.

“I find it harder to accept the criticism of former players who have gone on to become journalists and who spread their hatred around,” the 29-year-old told French magazine Les Inrockuptibles.

“They had the same difficulties, but have no solidarity. I feel embarrassed for him, frankly.”

Lineker has since responded, again on Twitter, referencing his original tweet but this time asking if Benzema might be “a tad over-sensitive”, while defending his right to question players’ performance and ability per his job.

Tottenham v Real Madrid is live tonight on BT Sport 2.

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