In what has to be one of the most surprising football news stories in recent years, things have gone from bad to worse for Karim Benzema today in relation to the blackmail attempt on fellow French football Mathieu Valbuena.
After initial reports emerged this morning, Benzema has now officially been charged in relation to the case. AFP are reporting that Benzema became embroiled in the case 'at the request of a childhood friend who was approached by three blackmailers who were in possession of the sex tape.' It is thought that Benzema then approached Valbuena about the tape during a French training camp in October.
It is from here where suggestions of Benzema's involvement differ greatly. On one hand, the allegation is that he put pressure on Valbuena to pay the blackmailers. However, the Real Madrid attacker denies he is part of the extortion plot and instead claims he is a victim in all this with the assumption being that he was offering advice to Valbuena on how to make it all go away.
There we were thinking it couldn't get any crazier after Djibril Cisse was taken into custody.
And in another slightly awkward coincidence, the French squad for the friendlies against Germany and England was named this morning and there was no place for either Benzema or Valbuena.
— Equipe de France ⭐⭐ (@equipedefrance) November 5, 2015