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Cachorro
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18,741 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Yesterday, Palmeiras' heroic goalkeeper Marcos, a.k.a. "Saint Marcos", announced his retirement from football. I'm not a Palmeirense but I can't help but be a little sad at this; Marcos' commitment to his club is pretty uncommon nowadays, and his sharp observations of the football world around him are even rarer. There are few players today who have as much personality as Marcos, and even fewer have his courage. He may not have been the best keeper ever, but his teams' fans always knew that the big guy on goal was willing to break every bone in his body to defend his team, a boundless dedication that made him an inspiration not only to his teammates but to anyone who was paying attention.



Marcos wasn't afraid of getting hurt, and he also wasn't afraid of hurting anyone's feelings with his sincerity. If his team played like shit, Marcos would say so to anyone who asked. If he stepped out of the goal-line to defend a penalty he didn't deny it because that would be bullshit; Marcos admitted it like a man and accepted any consequences that came his way. If it had to be done to protect his team, that was all that mattered to him.

"I've made some great saves, but everyone says the most important one was the penalty from Marcelinho Carioca that I saved on the Libertadores. Eliminating Corinthians by catching a penalty from that guy really was unforgettable. And of course I stepped forward."

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The unfortunate consequence of Marcos' goalkeeping style - which some might call "bold" and others would call "reckless" - is the large number of injuries and broken bones caused by his heroism, which grew in numbers as the years passed. In 97 it was his ankle and shin, in 2000 his left hand; in 2001 his right thumb was broken in a Qualifiers' match against Paraguay. In 2003 Marcos injured his hip, abdomen, thigh and right foot; in 2004 his left hand was broken again in an NT training session and had to be operated; in 2005 it was his right hand and then his right clavicle. In 2006 his right thigh and shoulder took him out of that year's World Cup. In 2007 his left arm was fractured. And that's an incomplete list. This guy literally put his team above his own well-being; how many pro players can say the same?



"I think the fans scream my name on the stadium because I'm annoying (laughter). My sincerity has been the same since I began as a footballer. Maybe that captivated fans from Palmeiras and also other clubs. But in football it may not be such a good idea to be authenthic. The other day I said our team didn't play well and it was a scandal. They twisted it and said I had bashed my own team. I didn't. But since it's Marcos it's a different story. I'm watching myself, though. In this last game I must have improved a little, because I didn't give an interview at all (laughter)."

And of course, another thing that is pretty rare nowadays is a player of Marcos' level staying his whole career on the club where he began. Having began in 1992, that's almost 20 years of service! And it's not like Marcos never got offers. The most tempting one came from Arsenal after Marcos won the 2002 World Cup, but Palmeiras had just been relegated and Marcos refused to leave his beloved club at that moment; he just couldn't leave Palmeiras in their darkest hour. After they returned to the 1st division, the accumulated injuries began scaring away most major candidates... and Marcos was content on a club where he was already a legend, so going to minor Euro clubs didn't interest him even if the wages were higher.

"After 16 years in this club, I can't be just professional. I've never kissed anyone's ass. If the fans like me it's because of what I've achieved. It's because I broke my clavicle by throwing myself at the ball. It's because I refused a R$ 45 millions offer from Arsenal to stay here and play the Serie B. I stopped making decisions based on reason alone. Sometimes I do things with my heart, like a true fan. I like Palmeiras too much, and I just try to help. But I know that can create problems."

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And then there was the biggest moment of Marcos' career, and the reason so many non-Brasilians know who Marcos is: the 2002 World Cup.



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When discussing the heroes of Brasil's 5th WC triumph, Ronaldo and Rivaldo are always at the top of the list, but Marcos was essential for that campaign. The bravery that Palmeirenses know so well was there, as were the great saves that built Marcos' reputation. And in the WC final he silenced all the critics who would rather have Dida or Rogerio Ceni guarding Brasil's net. Epic moments require epic character.

"I'll break every bone in my body all over again if I have to... I refuse to lose. I know how much I suffered to be here."
- (Marcos' dressing-room speech to the Palmeiras team before the 2008 São Paulo state championship final)



And Marcos wasn't just brave inside the pitch. After crushing defeats, when most players of the losing side run into the tunnels to avoid the press, Marcos was always willing to stand up to be counted. If it were his fault he'd admit it, and if it were a teammate's fault he was ready to say so as well.

What he said about a goal he suffered from Santo Andre in 2004:
"I would only catch that ball if I had a rocket stuck in my ass."

What Marcos said after Palmeiras lost by 6x0 to Coritiba in the 2010 Brasilian Cup, shortly after Marcos had returned from an injury:
"Now you know how it goes, in Palmeiras they always need a Christ to crucify and it will certainly be me. Nobody played jack shit but they'll say that it'
s all my fault. Felipão (Scolari) asked me to play and I'm not a coward. So I told him, You can field me. But if I knew the team would be this ****ing sleepy I'd have told him to keep me out of this. And now I insist on playing the return match, if our team dug this hole then I'm getting buried in it too."

About the metal plate inside his forearm, consequence of one of his many injuries:
"The other day I got stuck in the bank's rotating door. The watchman told me to take out my cellphone, keys and everything else I had in my pockets, but the door wouldn't open. I showed him my arm and said "The metal is in here, and I can't take it out". He laughed and opened the door."

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So let me applaud this superb player, who never defended my club but always had my respect. An absolutely top-class keeper, and a man of unusual sincerity. As a wise man once said, "Sports don't build character, they reveal it" - and Marcos' strenght of character was indeed revealed every time he jumped at an opposing forward's feet to block their shot, every time he threw himself at the ball as if lives depended on it, every time he took responsibility for his failures and called out his own teammates for theirs. Let me applaud "Saint" Marcos as he leaves behind the footbal pitches where he protected his net with everything he had, without hesitation, without limits, without fear. :star:


 

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Rei Brasileiro
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8,569 Posts
Thanks for making this Grinch!!! :proud:
What can I say... the guy turned down Arsenal and decided to play for us when we ended up relegated.... PURE class. Rare athlete. Sad day indeed.
 

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oic
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1,623 Posts
dida was much better than marcos in the first semester of 2002.

he won all with corinthians in the 2002. copa do brasil, rio sao paulo.

being very decisive in the most important moments

against a very strong sao paulo of kaka, frança, reinaldo, j. baptista, f.simplicio, belleti, edmilson

but he was starter in 2002 bcoz Scolari had worked with him.


but no doubt dida WAS BETTER at least in that moment

in terms of career, i think dida won INFINITELY MORE TITLES

and only made mistakes after he was above 30 years old.
 

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Cachorro
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18,741 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
And your point is...?

I can only speak for myself, but I've never rated Franguida higher than Marcos.
 

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Cachorro
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18,741 Posts
Discussion Starter #11


IMVHO, Marcos has more character in one of his frequently-broken fingers than Rogerio "not my fault" Ceni has in his whole body.
 

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Cachorro
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18,741 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I watched Dida since he was a nobody at Vitoria, SL; and having watched both players' careers I think Marcos was more reliable. I'm not going hunting for Dida clips just because you disagree with me; if you prefer Dida over Marcos then we simply disagree.

And at any rate, nowhere did I say that Marcos was the best keeper ever or anything of the sort. I praised Marcos' character and bravery (two virtues that he always had in spades) and his high quality as a keeper, which I'd imagine is undeniable even if one happens to prefer Dida or Ceni. I don't see the point of diminishing either of them to praise another great player, they were different players and there never was a significant gulf in difference between them. Marcos' strenght of character and selflessness earned my enduring respect, and that's all I wanted to celebrate. Marcos is part of a dying breed: sportsmen who are actual role models, and not just advertising space. And we don't have to wait until these people are dead to praise them. ;)
 

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Registered
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19,633 Posts
A legend indeed, I still remember his saves in the final of WC 2002. Too bad we didn't see him in the NT after that very often...
 

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DAGOODS = RATINGS
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22,471 Posts
Another average player who benefited playing alongside O FENOMENO RONALDO in the 2002 WC - for suuuuuuuuure!
 

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Rei Brasileiro
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8,569 Posts
Marcos vs Dida! :howler:
Dida could never manage arials balls as well as Marcos, nor did he have Marcos' CLUTCHness... Marcos was CLUTCH, decisive when he needed to be- you freakin corinthiano should know above ANYONE how clutch he is ;)

If Did was in goal in the WC02, I doubt we wouldve won. Wouldve ended up like in 06 when he shouldve went for that cross to Henry and given the ball to RC
 

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Cachorro
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18,741 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
This month Placar published a retrospective of Marcos' career, and there were some good stories there.



- After winning the 1998 Libertadores final, Marcos was chosen man of the match and won the brand-new Toyota that is traditionally offered by the tournament's sponsor to the MVP of the last match. In Brasil, the tradition in these cases is that the MVP sells the car and shares the money with the whole squad, but Marcos said he wouldn't do it. "He said he was just beginning, had one of the lowest wages of the team and didn't have to share his prize. Parmalat didn't pay his wages like they did for the stars (like Alex, Zinho, Cesar Sampaio and Junior)." explains Fenerbahce's midfielder Alex. "He speaks in a way that you can't disagree. It's hard to get mad at Marcos."

- In March 11th 2007, in a SP championship game against Juventus, Marcos suffered one of the many injuries of his career and ended up having to operate his left forearm. As he was about to return, he got injured again. And another surgery would be necessary. Palmeiras' director Saverio Orlandi phoned the club's doctor Rubens Sampaio to talk about Marcos' status. Marcos, who was standing right beside the doctor, asked to talk to the director. "Look, tell mr. Gilberto (Cipullo, who was then the club's vice-president) that I want to pay for this surgery from my own pocket. I'm only costing Palmeiras money, because I'm not playing. And I don't want to get paid until I'm playing again." Marcos' requests were not accepted.

- During the 2008 Brasilian league, Palmeiras and Gremio played in Palmeiras' stadium Palestra Italia. Palmeiras was losing and around the 30th minute of the 2nd half, Marcos ran upfield to join the attack on a set piece. Luxemburgo (the manager) got angry and yelled at Marcos. Then minutes later Marcos did the exact same thing again. After the game, Luxemburgo called the directors and said he couldn't accept disobedience, he demanded a punishment for the star. On the following monday the players had the day off, and one of the directors tried to call Marcos, hoping to prepare him for the punishment as diplomatically as possible. But he couldn't find him. On tuesday morning there's a lot of tension in the air. Then Marcos arrives and surprises everyone by saying "Look, I couldn't just stand there, the stadium was packed, we were losing... I fvcked up and I apologize." "He looked like a student who knew that he had screwed up", says Saverio Orlandi (who was the director).



- In 2000, Marcos was with the national team. One day, after the training session was over, Romario asked for finishing drills. The idea was that someone would cross the ball and he'd shoot at goal on first touch, without defenders on the way. The keepers were Dida and Marcos. But just as the drill began Marcos yelled "Are you fvcking kidding me? When he's marked he already scores a load of goals, now imagine him unmarked!" Then he took off his gloves, said he wasn't a clown and asked for a coffee (it's pretty cold in the NT's training facilities at Teresopolis). "So I had to explain to Romario that it was nothing personal, and he was like that at Palmeiras too" says Alex. :D

- In 2010 Palmeiras built a refectory for the club's employees - but not for the athletes, who ate somewhere else with meals designed by nutritionists. The only exception was that Marcos sometimes ate there. After practice he would go there to have lunch and talk to the gardeners, cleaning staff and clerks. "He'd get in line, know the cooks by name, like a regular guy" says Fernando Miranda, an ex-keeper who's part of the technical staff and one of Marcos' best friends.

 

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Bernard > Messi
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2,687 Posts
alongside with DIDA the two best brazilian GKs in the last 15 years...
 
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