Player Profile – MarquezJune 9, 2007
Full name: Rafael Marquez Alvarez
Birthplace: Zamora, Mexico
Date of Birth: 13th February 1979
Previous Teams: Atlas Guadalajara, Mexico; AS Monaco, France.
National Squad/Number of Appearances: Mexico/60+
Rafael Marquez arrived at Barcelona in the 2003-4 close season. A promising young defender, he was brought into the club to add versatility to the defensive line-up. He is considered to be one of the finest potential young defenders in the European game. Although he normally plays as a central defender he is equally capable of playing a holding midfield role.
- Marquez is the first Mexican player to ever play for Barcelona.
- He made his debut appearance in the Mexican First Division aged only 17.
- The player is nicknamed ‘Rafa’ and the ‘Kaiser of Michoacan’ and has been compared to Franz Beckenbauer.
- He has won two Spanish Supercups (2005-6/2006-7), two League Titles (2004-5/2005-6) and the Champions League (2005-6) with Barcelona. Prior to joining the club he won the French title (2000), the French Supercup (2000) and the French League Cup (2003) with AS Monaco.
- Barcelona’s Champions League win in 2005-6 made Marquez the first Mexican player ever to win the trophy.
- FIFA has previously named Marquez as the third most famous footballer in the world.
- Marquez was named the French league’s top defender during his time with Monaco.
- He was named the Best North American Footballer in 2005.
- The player is the captain of the Mexican national team.
- Marquez has won the Confederations Cup (1999) and the Gold Cup (2003) with Mexico.
- His goal celebrations have included sucking his thumb – a move he dedicates to his kids – and kissing a bracelet given to him by his wife.
- The player is contracted to Barcelona until 2010.
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