The former Real Madrid striker is reportedly keen on returning to Europe and has already been contacted by two English giants.

Karim Benzema's future remains up in the air despite having just joined the Saudi Pro League a few months ago. The French striker left Real Madrid for Al Ittihad in the summer of 2023 but fast forward to today and the 2022 Ballon d'Or winner is already seeking an exit.

According to Marca, the 36-year-old and his representatives scheduled a meeting with his employers on Wednesday to resolve this issue. However, with the player wanting to leave the Gulf nation only a few months after arriving, these crunch talks are expected to be difficult.

The former Los Blancos ace is reportedly yearning for a return to Europe. Furthermore, the Spanish publication goes as far as naming three European clubs that have contacted Benzema's entourage after he failed to report for duty in Jeddah following the New Year.

Two of those three teams are Premier League sides and they are Manchester United and Arsenal. However, things remain unclear for both the Red Devils and the Gunners as an early departure will not be easy. Lyon are the other party keen on acquiring their former striker.

As stated in the Marca report, the issue is not due to money. Benzema reportedly earns a whopping $107M per year at Al Ittihad, a figure no club outside of Saudi Arabia can offer. As a result, there is an acceptance from the player that his wages will significantly drop were he to leave the Middle East temporarily until the end of the season or permanently.

However, Benzema's deal with the Saudis was not strictly football related. The French ace is also an ambassador of both the league and the country similar to former Real Madrid teammate Cristiano Ronaldo.

Additionally, Al Ittihad are not keen on letting the Frenchman leave the kingdom prematurely. Jordan Henderson was allowed to cut his stay short but Benzema was expected to take the status of the league to a new height alongside the flourishing Ronaldo and Al Hilal's Neymar, who has sadly been ruled out for the long term due to an ACL injury.

As a result, this will be a complicated matter between club and player. Will Benzema return to his home continent or will he have to live with the consequences of leaving the pinnacle of world football a year or two too early? Only time will tell.