Back in 2009, Karim Benzema was one of the most coveted youngsters in the world of football.

The then France international was still at Lyon, having scored 66 goals in 148 games for the club at the age of 21, and Manchester United, then at the peak of their powers under Sir Alex Ferguson, were very interested.

That’s not exactly a secret, and neither is the fact the player eventually went to Real Madrid, but he did so for less money than what the Old Trafford side were offering.

This is according to Jean-Michel Aulas, who was speaking to beIN Sports in France on Monday evening.

He said: “When Karim was solicited to leave Lyon, we had two offers: Manchester United and Real Madrid, and Karim, like Nabil (Fékir), came to see me, and that’s where there’s relationships that show trust, and told me ‘My dream is to play for Real Madrid’, and so he went to Real Madrid for an inferior fee to what we had from Manchester United”.

Benzema moved to Spain for £31.5m, which was a lot of money back in those days, so it would be interesting to see how much the Premier League side were willing to spend for the Frenchman.

While he never quite became *the* star in Madrid, Benzema has had a very successful 10 years with the Spanish giants, winning four Champions League, two La Ligas and two Copa del Reys, scoring 236 goals and picking up 130 assists in 483 games.

Quite the résumé, really.