'Zidane's message is enjoyment' - Real Madrid ready to hit the ground running, insists Benzema

Karim Benzema is convinced Real Madrid will hit the ground running when they resume their La Liga campaign, highlighting Zinedine Zidane's emphasis on "enjoyment" following the coronavirus-enforced hiatus.

After a three-month suspension to the season due to the Covid-19 outbreak, Madrid will return to the pitch on June 14 when they host Eibar.

La Liga has been allowed to recommence behind closed doors thanks to the threat of the virus decreasing, and Madrid look set to push Barcelona all the way in the title race.

Barca resume the season two points clear of their bitter rivals, but Benzema is certain Los Blancos are ready for the challenge and they have relished being back in full training, with Zidane putting focus on ensuring the players are enjoying their work.

Benzema told Real Madrid TV: "Zidane's message is enjoyment. Enjoy playing football. We have had more contact with the ball than last week.

"We did more fitness last week and now, as we are closer to the restart of La Liga, we have been using the ball more.

"The adaptation has been very good, step by step. It is much better here with our team-mates and with the ball, because it is more difficult to do so at home. It is more about the gym and fitness.

"Two months without a ball makes things tougher when you are back, but we are fine now, and we will keep working together with the ball. For instance, we have played a game today [Tuesday] and it's been very good for everyone.

"We can't wait to restart the competition and it's very important to win games. The first game against Eibar at home will be very important. So, we will give our best until the end."

The absence of supporters will be more peculiar for Madrid – who are used to playing in front of up to 80,000 people in the capital – than most, particularly as they are set to play home games at the Alfredo Di Stefano stadium, the 6,000-seat home of the Castilla side, to allow construction work to proceed on the Santiago Bernabeu.

Benzema, though, believes the team will still feel the love from those watching at home.

"It will be different, for sure," said the striker. "We always need our supporters.

"However, we will have our fans here and hopefully all of them will be in front of a TV supporting us, that's all. We know we have to win the games because they are very important for us and for the club and we will be at our best."