Benzema was born in the city of Lyon and began his football career with local club Bron Terraillon. In 1996, he joined the biggest club in the city, Olympique Lyonnais and, subsequently, came through the club's youth academy. Benzema made his professional debut in the 2004–05 season and appeared sporadically in his first three seasons as Lyon won three titles in that span. In the 2007–08 season, Benzema became a starter and had a breakthrough year scoring over 30 goals as Lyon won its seventh straight league title. For his performances, he was named the National Union of Professional Footballers (UNFP) Ligue 1 Player of the Year and named to the organization's Team of the Year. Benzema was also the league's top scorer and given the Bravo Award by Italian magazine Guerin Sportivo. After another season at Lyon, in July 2009, Benzema moved to Spanish team Real Madrid in a transfer fee worth over €35 million ($50 million), and signed a six year contract.[5] After struggling to establish himself in his debut season with the club, in the ensuing two seasons, Benzema reached prominence scoring 32 goals en route to helping Real Madrid win the Copa del Rey in 2011 and the 2011–12 edition of La Liga. He has been named French Player of the Year twice for his performances in 2011 and 2012.[6]



On 1 July 2009, it was announced that Lyon had reached an agreement with Spanish club Real Madrid for the transfer of Benzema. The transfer fee was priced at €35 million with the fee rising to as much as €41 million based on incentives.On 9 July, Benzema successfully passed his medical and signed his contract, a six-year deal, later that afternoon. He was presented officially as a Real Madrid player later that night at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, similarly to the previous signings of Kaká and Cristiano Ronaldo. Benzema made his Real Madrid debut on 20 July in the club's opening pre-season friendly against Irish club Shamrock Rovers in Dublin, appearing as a halftime substitute. He scored the lone goal in the club's 1–0 win, scoring in the 87th minute.On 24 August, Benzema netted two goals in Real Madrid's 4–0 victory over Norwegian club Rosenborg in an annual friendly tournament organized for the Santiago Bernabeu Trophy. The goals brought his total tally in the preseason with Real Madrid to five, making him the joint top scorer alongside fellow striker Raúl

Benzema made his league debut for Madrid on 29 August 2009 against Deportivo La Coruña. He started the match, but was substituted out in the second half as Madrid won 3–2. A month later, he scored his first goal for the club in a 5–0 victory against newly promoted club Xerez. After missing the mid-week match against Villarreal, against Tenerife at the weekend, Benzema scored his first double for Madrid in a 3–0 home victory. He made his Champions League debut for the club on 30 September in a group stage tie against French club Marseille. In the match, Benzema assisted on a Cristiano Ronaldo goal.After failing to score a goal in the month of October, in the team's first match in November against Italian club Milan in the Champions League, Benzema scored the opener to give Madrid a 1–0 lead. His goal was later cancelled out by a Ronaldinho penalty. On 7 November, in the El Derbi madrileño, Benzema assisted on Madrid's second goal, scored by Marcelo. Madrid won the match 3–2.