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20th Jun 2018

Why Rafael Marquez cannot drink from the same bottles as his Mexico teammates

Don't expect the Mexico captain to be named Man of the Match any time soon

Darragh Murphy

One of Mexico’s most established players has found himself in a rather unique position in the World Cup.

A report in the New York Times claims that Mexico captain Rafael Marquez is on a United States Treasury Department blacklist which means that he is not able to enjoy all the same privileges as his teammates.

Apparently, Marquez is suspected of having some involvement in laundering money for drug cartels and therefore he is ineligible to be associated with any American individuals, businesses or banks throughout the tournament in Russia.

It means that the veteran defender does not drink from the same branded water bottles as his international compatriots and Marquez also wears a different training kit to his teammates, with Mexico forced to distance the 39-year-old from their main sponsors.

Marquez, who equalled the record by appearing in his fifth World Cup during his side’s shock 1-0 victory over defending champions Germany on Sunday, is also believed to be ineligible to be rewarded with the Budweiser Man of the Match award, no matter how well he performs on the pitch.

It’s reported that the former Barcelona player has also agreed to not get paid for his exertions in Russia, while separate plans may feasibly have to be made with regards to his accommodation to ensure that he is not being linked with any American brands.