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Mexico's Rafael Marquez dismisses retirement talk ahead of U.S. match

Mexico captain Rafael Marquez says he won't consider retirement as long as he can maintain a high level of play.

Former Barcelona star Marquez and his Mexico teammates will take on the United States in a Confederations Cup playoff on Saturday in Pasadena, California.

Speaking to reporters on Friday, the 36-year-old defender said he once considered hanging up his boots, but that time has long passed.

"In the World Cup in South Africa I thought maybe I would retire," Marquez said.

"But the level of football keeps me here.

"I'm conscious that at some point my level will drop. So really I'm just going to enjoy doing what I can, while I can. Tomorrow is just another game."

Coaches have come and gone, but Rafa Marquez remains a stalwart in the Mexico defense.
Rafa Marquez, 36, says he considered retirement after the 2010 World Cup.

Marquez has participated in a number of matches with Mexico's neighbors to the north, with each one being a memorable experience.

"It's been a long time that I've been playing against the United States, I don't know how many games I've had against them.

"But we have a passion for this game. Sports-wise I think the matches in the past have always been wonderful."

While pressure to win on Saturday is high, the Hellas Verona man is hopeful Mexico will be at their best when it counts.

"The team has a great deal of potential and we just want to show that tomorrow," Marquez said. "I hope the team can show that."

"I don't know if we should think about it that way," he said.

"We have great commitment to have a good game tomorrow. We're going to try and take that pressure off of having the obligation to win."


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