Is it the end for Benzema and Bojan?
In an ideal world, Barcelona-based Mundo Deportivo referring to Bojan Krkic as the Ã¢ÂÂclone of David VillaÃ¢ÂÂ would have been praise enough to send the 12-year-old striker off to bed with his glass of warm milk a very happy bunny indeed.
Unfortunately, the paper was making a rare attempt at irony. Or perhaps flat-out sarcasm. In truth LLL has never really been able to tell the difference...
Despite Bojan captaining a mixture of Ã¢ÂÂBÃ¢ÂÂ teamers and Javier Mascherano in a 2-0 win away at Ceuta in the Copa del Rey, Bojan played like Villa is at the moment by blowing chance after chance.
But whilst his World Cup-winning team-mate has quite a track record behind him that demonstrates that the tiny-bearded one is merely going through a blip in form, BojanÃ¢ÂÂs inability to score against BarÃÂ§aÃ¢ÂÂs third-tier opponents is further evidence that bowl-headed forward may not be able to cut the Catalan clubÃ¢ÂÂs mustard.
Although PepÃ¢ÂÂs Dream Boys always like to promote from within, the BarÃÂ§a boss can still be fairly ruthless if he doesnÃ¢ÂÂt like the Ã¢ÂÂcanteraÃ¢ÂÂ cut of anyoneÃ¢ÂÂs gib - just look at Giovani dos SantosÃ¢ÂÂ career path. And LLL has felt that Bojan has been on the cusp of being kicked out for some time now with Guardiola pulling back from the brink due to a shortage up front (no size-ist pun intended).
In league 53 appearances for Barcelona under PepÃ¢ÂÂs reign, the 20-year-old has shown Arizmendi-esque form by chalking up just 10 goals. Bojan should have added two Copa strikes to that tally, on Tuesday night, instead it was Maxwell and Pedro who came through with a couple of first-half efforts.
The biggest bright side in the victory was that Ã¢ÂÂPep didnÃ¢ÂÂt need to threaten his players with being blacklistedÃ¢ÂÂ noted Mundo Deportivo, having a chuckle at Real MadridÃ¢ÂÂs expense with JosÃÂ© MourinhoÃ¢ÂÂs men being held to a goalless draw in their own first leg cup clash against Murcia.
Despite the somewhat dramatic promise from the Madrid manager that any footballer who did not perform in the game would be dead to him, a pragmatic Mourinho said he was fairly pleased with his players' efforts and no-oneÃ¢ÂÂs neck would be on the chopping block. Ã¢ÂÂI canÃ¢ÂÂt say anything bad about my team,dÃ¢ÂÂ said the coach protectively.
Marca disagree completely with WednesdayÃ¢ÂÂs front cover declaring that Karim Benzema was Ã¢ÂÂfinishedÃ¢ÂÂ at the club after being hauled off after 62 minutes having managed just one shot on target and an hour strolling around the pitch like he was mapping out a croquet course.
Mourinho had predicted that the Murcia match would be BenzemaÃ¢ÂÂs day but it clearly wasnÃ¢ÂÂt the case. And this is just the beginning of the end for the Frenchman claims Roberto GÃÂ³mez inside the paper, poo-pooing one of El PresidenteÃ¢ÂÂs super signings. Ã¢ÂÂOne of FlorentinoÃ¢ÂÂs pearls proved that his future is far away from the Santiago Bernabeu.Ã¢ÂÂ
Whilst there can be no doubt over the talent that the Frenchman possesses, there continues to be no indication that Benzema is inclined to use it at Real Madrid, with the Frenchman still sleepwalking his way through the increasingly few chances he is being handed.
It is a different kettle of carp with Bojan who has all the will in the world to succeed at Barcelona but may not have the ability.
Both footballers had big chances to show what they could do against little teams, on Tuesday, but both blew it completely.