Karim Benzema has been ruled out of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar after tearing a muscle in his left thigh, the French Football Federation has confirmed.

The Ballon d'Or winner, 34, was forced to leave defending champions France's training session early after suffering the injury in training on Saturday.

"Karim Benzema is out of the World Cup," the French football federation (FFF) said.

"After hurting the quadriceps on his left thigh the Real Madrid striker is forced to give up on taking part in the World Cup."

Benzema was taking part in his first full training session with Les Bleus when he had to come off after feeling some pain in his left thigh.

"He went for an MRI scan in a hospital (clinic) in Doha, which unfortunately confirmed a tear," the FFF added.

Benzema wrote on Instagram: "In my life I have never given up but tonight I have to think about the team, as I have always done, so reason tells me to leave my place to someone who can help our group make a good World Cup.

"Thank you for all your messages of support."

France coach Didier Deschamps added: "I am extremely sad for Karim who had made this World Cup a major objective. Despite this new blow for the French team, I have full confidence in my group. We will do everything to meet the huge challenge that awaits us."

https://twitter.com/equipedefrance/status/1594095235067482113

Since winning the Ballon d'Or last month, Benzema has played fewer than 30 minutes for Madrid after coming off the bench in a Champions League game against Celtic.

Benzema was France's top scorer at the 2014 World Cup but did not play in France's victorious 2018 World Cup campaign. France coach Deschamps recalled him for last year's European Championship, where he was France's top scorer with four goals.

Deschamps is already missing midfielders Paul Pogba and N'Golo Kante, who helped France win the World Cup four years ago.

-Skysports