The Arsenal target was left out of the tournament for his alleged involvement in a s. ex tape blackmail scandal involving teammate Mathieu Valbuena.
Karim Benzema watched on from afar as France vs Romania kicked off Euro 2016.
The Real Madrid forward was left out of the tournament after being suspended by the French Football Federation after becoming embroiled in an alleged s. ex tape blackmail scandal involving Les Bleus teammate Mathieu Valbuena.
The two-time Champions League winner faces up to five years in jail over accusations that he encouraged Valbuena, the Lyon midfielder, to pay the blackmailers.
But despite not being part of his country’s own tournament Benzema took the time to take in the opening game and wished his teammates well on Instagram.
Despite his suspension the Real Madrid forward has echoed comments made by Eric Cantona suggesting that both he and Hatem Ben Arfa have been left out of the squad due to their ethnicity.
Benzema told Spanish daily Marca that Deschamps “bowed to pressure from a racist French party” in electing not to select him, referencing the recent electoral success of France’s far-right National Front.
“He has bowed to the pressure of a racist part of France,” he said.
“He has to know that in France the extremist party reached the second round in the last two elections.
“I do not know, therefore, whether it is a decision only for Didier because I’ve gotten along with him, with the president (of the French Football Federation, Noel Le Graet) and everyone.”