Marquez suspended for three games

RafaMarquez (


New York Red Bulls midfielder Rafa Marquez always figured to face some sort of suspension for his actions in last weekend's match against the San Jose Earthquakes. On Thursday, Marquez and the Red Bulls found out just how stiff a punishment he will face.

MLS announced on Thursday that Marquez will be suspended for three matches after injuring San Jose midfielder Shea Salinas with a bearhug and slam that resulted in Salinas suffering a broken collarbone.

Marquez was also issued an undisclosed fine for his actions. He wasn't the only player suspended by MLS on Thursday. San Jose midfielder Marvin Chavez was issued a one-game suspension for a reckless tackle on Roy Miller.

The suspension means Marquez will miss the Red Bulls' upcoming matches against Eastern Conference rivals D.C. United and New England, as well as a high-profile road trip to the take on the Los Angeles Galaxy.

The suspension is just the latest in Marquez's checkered tenure in MLS. He was suspended for the start of the 2012 season and the Red Bulls' final playoff game in 2011 for his role in a skirmish with the LA Galaxy. Prior to that, Marquez was suspended by the Red Bulls for making critical comments of teammate Tim Ream to the media.

Here is the play Marquez was suspended for in case you had yet to see it, or if you just want to watch it again:


What do you think of the punishment? Think it's fair or do you feel Marquez deserved an even longer suspension?

Share your thoughts below.

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90 Responses to Marquez suspended for three games

  1. ec says:

    Wow. I always guess low on MLS suspensions, and I was sure this was a 5 gamer.

  2. RSLfan says:

    I thought for sure it would be at least 5 games as well…

  3. ChrisTheLSUTiger says:

    What a joke. Way to be harsh on violent play and repeat offenders, MLS.

  4. Steve says:

    I wish they would have suspended him for the whole year just so he would go away. What a disaster. His play on the field doesn’t justify his bullsh*t on and off it.

  5. agnigrin says:

    Chavez should have also gotten a 3 game suspension! I am glad Marquez is out… The Red Bulls play better without him…

  6. Jason says:

    Mullan – 10 games for his horrible tackle on Zakuani
    Clark – 9 games for kicking Ruiz
    Sala – 6 games for punching Freeman and Kirovski

    Marquez – 3 games for breaking Salinas’s collarbone on an American football tackle and added kick.

    WTF?!?!?! Yeah, there’s no favoritism going on for an NY DP or anything. What a joke. so much for all that tough talk from the Disciplinary Committee over the last year.

  7. ex_sweeper says:

    Too bad Shea is such a christian. A civil lawsuit for aggravated assault is in order.

  8. TheFrenchOne says:

    i’m way more bothered by the kick in the face once he’s down. that crossed the line from mere thuggery to class-less

  9. Tim Section 133 says:

    Typical conduct from Marquez. When are they going to realize the cost far outweighs the benefit?

  10. PD says:

    it’s not too different how they’re handling the suspensions in NHL… the “star” players are treated with kid gloves. This clown should have been gone for at least 5 games…

  11. David St. Hubbins says:

    MLS is a disgrace… 3 games for breaking Salinas’s collarbone??? What the heck! I guess Chavez should have broken Miller’s leg b/c he only would’ve gotten banned 2 more games.

  12. Rob in SJ says:

    Speaking of favoritism for NY DP’s… How does Chavez get one game suspension and Henry does not for his studs up tackle on Wondo? Chavez was deserved but I think Henry was just as bad. I wish MLS could discipline the refs for so many missed calls that led to player injuries.

  13. Nigel Tufnel says:

    3 games? 2 games? ours go to 11.

  14. Eric B says:

    He should be suspended for as long as Salinas is out. Punishment should equal the crime, this is a disgrace…

  15. David St. Hubbins says:

    Exactly… when you need the extra push… over the cliff… these go to eleven.

  16. Alan says:

    It was an intentional kick to/near the face of a player on the ground that could not protect them selves. The ball was no where near the play. How is that not a 10 game suspension?

  17. wildchild says:

    I don’t like Marquez either BUT… this did not deserve a suspension. wrestling in the box happens all the time. he was just unlucky that his mark tripped, he fell on top, collarbone broken.

    i guess it’s karma then…

  18. Chris says:

    This guy is useless and Red Bull should get rid of him. He can’t run, can’t defend, can’t execute on set pieces, throws his teammates under the bus, and when he’s not injured or suspended he’s playing WAY below his salary. Not sure how much of his salary Red Bull would have to eat to get rid of him, but at this point it would be addition by subtraction.

  19. ManicMessiah says:

    To call Rafa’s grabbing and fall with Salinas an NFL style tackle is a gross exaggeration.

    He should be suspended for the kick, and if you wanted to make it longer than three games I wouldn’t have a problem with it, though I’d disagree. Yohan Cabaye of Newcastle was suspended 3 matches for a very similar kick against a Brighton player in their FA cup match.

  20. marco says:

    Based on video tape and the NYRB announcer comments, I believe Rafa needs some medical help also. I along with Shep didn’t understand what he was doing and why he was doing it. It doesn’t happen all the time, and Shep suggested and I agree that he is disturbed.

  21. fischy says:

    Yes — and I imagine that’s why he got the suspension. The injury was a freakish result from the kind of in-the-box clutching and pushing that goes on during every kick.

    As I wrote before, I doubt Rafa meant to take Salinas down. In fact, the kick suggests that Rafa was pissed at Salinas for going down, probably thinking that Shea was angling for a PK call.

  22. 19541 says:

    RB supporter here – the hype on this is huge!

    This was hardly a American football/rugby style tackle. If it was its weaker than what you see during any schoolyard football game or 100x during any rugby match.

    That being said – yes its a foul – easily a PK at least a yellow.

    The kick on the other hand is intentional and dirty from a player with a history of dirty shots. Surprised the suspension wasn’t more- at least 5 games or even higher.

    I am very sorry Salinas got his collarbone broken.

  23. fischy says:

    3 games for the kick. The collarbone injury was freakish, caused by the awkward way the two guys fell, which was never what Rafa tried to do.

  24. Rob says:

    yea, i agree, except that marquez really does kick him square in the dome on the way down. you could fall down all day, your leg doesn’t whip that direction

  25. fischy says:

    It wasn’t much of a kick. I’m not sure you can say it was to the Salinas’ face, and it’s hard to even say he connected.

  26. Marcus says:

    I assume that since he was falling (and therefore, so was his leg), it’s hard to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt the amount to which he was intentionally trying to hurt Salinas.

    (This coming from someone who thinks he should have gotten more games)

  27. fischy says:

    As a DC United fan, I think it’s unfair that Rafa has to miss the match on Sunday. His absence makes the Reed Bulls stronger.

  28. Baal says:

    He’s going to hurt someone before they get rid of him… oh, wait. He did.

    Get rid of him now. Not enough.

  29. Eugene says:

    It’s done, move on.

  30. marco says:

    “… it’s hard to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt…”

    That is not the standard of evidence in sports.

  31. Camjam says:

    Well reasoned. My initial reaction was at least 5 games; but upon review, the only thing REALLY wrong was the Dbag kick at the end. Horrible marking like that happens all the time in MLS, and Shea just happened to fall. 3 games for the kick sounds about right.

  32. Eric K says:

    He’s been shockingly bad, first just as a center defender, even more so since he’s a high-profile, highly paid player. They might be better off without him. Hey, maybe play one of those youth players from the academy that NYRB has touted, instead of all the foreigners they’ve signed for those spots.

    The Red Bulls’ best strategy is for their forwards and mids to keep as much possession as they can. With a rookie keeper (who’s been good) and a decimated defense, you wouldn’t want them to have too much to do.

  33. bcoug says:

    That’s what the kick in the face suggests to you???? Amazing.

  34. bcoug says:

    And it was just unlucky tripping earlier in the match when Rafa rode a SJ player (may have been Salinas also) down on a corner the same way?
    Man, that’s some unlucky tripping by the SJ players, the league should look into that.

  35. T$ says:

    I would have kicked Salinas twice and knocked over the stretcher for diving.

  36. Cabrito says:

    Well, then you’re a bigger POS than Marquez and automatically elegible for the Mexican National Team.

  37. Cabrito says:

    There’s a double standard in the league for sure. How does Henry get whistled on a studs-up challenge but no yellow card?

  38. mully says:

    Since the league won’t do it, someone on the pitch needs to take out Rafa.

  39. The Realist says:

    The majority of the comments on this page are way too dramatic.

    First of all, this is hardly an “American football tackle.” Yes, Rafa puts his arms around Salinas but this happens all the time on corner kicks.

    Plus, Rafa doesn’t force him to the ground; in fact, I think Salinas goes down looking for the penalty (which should’ve been given). But it’s not like the force of Rafa’s bear hug broke Salinas’ collar bone. Salinas went down awkwardly and if you think differently then I suggest you watch the video again.

    That being said, the follow through kick by Rafa was dirty, but I’ve seen a lot worse. It wasn’t like Rafa went cleats up on Salinas or stepped on him a la Pepe on Messi’s hand in the January Clasico (which, by the way, Pepe did not receive any suspension).

    If you’re going to cry about how dirty this tackle was and how there should be lawsuits and suspensions until Salinas’ collar bone heals – then you don’t understand the game of soccer and I suggest you find a new sport.

    The game is meant to be physical and tough. Sometimes players commit infractions and sometimes they go too far. Rafa definitely went too far but let’s keep some perspective.

    I feel bad that Salinas broke his collar bone but a 3 game suspension is more than enough for this offense.

  40. T$ says:

    Then I would kick Landon in the face!

  41. Big Chil says:

    Last year the guy who broke Ferreira’s ankle with a no chance tackle from behind in the boz also only got 3 games, and Ferreira’s still not back.

  42. Jason says:

    4 games actually. And Ferreira did play this season only to get injured again.

  43. Aguinaga says:

    Mullan – 10 games for his horrible tackle on Zakuani
    Clark – 9 games for kicking Ruiz
    Sala – 6 games for punching Freeman and Kirovski

    Marquez – 3 games for breaking Salinas’s collarbone on an American football tackle and added kick.

    Chavez – 1 game for a two footed studs up from behind clear intention to injure a guy bearing down on goal foul that also caused injury

    WTF?!?!?! Yeah, there’s no favoritism going on for an NY DP or anything if Chavez only got one.


  44. Colin McCarthy says:

    Realist – the reasons Shea “went down awkwardly” is because Marquez was holding his arms. Salinas had no way to brace for the fall. Marquez was literally on top of him.

    And just because something “happens all the time” doesn’t mean its legal. Marquez broke Salinas’ collar bone by violating the rules of the game.

    And for a bonus, he kicked him in the head afterwards.

    This kind of behavior does not happen all the time. And it shouldn’t be condoned.

  45. tmack says:

    Once again MLS protects its cash cows. Salazar’s failure to sufficiently deal with any of the ugly play was disappointing, but hardly shocking, given the poor level of officiating in MLS. Justice will be someone subjecting Henry to the type of challenge he made on Wondo, snapping his leg, and the league losing him for the season.

  46. Charles says:

    I think the Mullen comparison is not correct.

    Mullen was ticked and slid into Zakuani on purpose.

    Marquez deserved a penalty kick for his foul. I don’t think he was trying to hurt anyone, or in Mullen’s case trying to show the ref what a foul is.

    Should he have dragged his foot, kicked his foot ?

    NO, and he got ( and deserved ) three games.

  47. Bump Bailey says:

    Disagree with the length of the suspension but I am biased as I really can’t stand that guy. He is in over his head in the MLS. He can’t keep up and his own frustrations are getting the better of him. He has always been classless and now he has no skills left and his actions are acts of desperation. Really think that this will be close to the last we hear of him.

    Now the real question is what does the MLS do about that poor excuse of an official? He too is in way over his head. I am a Quakes fan and i think we kind of got away with murder too. So I am not saying it was only one way out there. Bernardez escaped a red cardable offense, Chavez probably should have been shown a red straight off. No doubt Rafa could have been called for a penalty and sent off right away.

    We have 3 sets of eyes plus a fourth on the sideline and no one sees anything. Watch the replay, the center official is looking right at the whole thing. If his reports says he didn’t see it. Well, then it is obvious that they need to get some referees that can see things actually happening right in front of them and realize that their job is to actually see and call the infraction. That is why they are the only one’s that get a whistle! They are really good with the little shaving cream lines at 10 yards though. So, I don’t want to seem overly harsh.

    For all those who say well that stuff goes on on every set piece. Well that too is load of *&^(). No where in the rules does it state that all rules go out the window on set pieces.

    We want games to open up? We want more scoring? Call penalties when they occur. When goals are scored games open up and possibly lead to even more goals.

  48. Air Jordanz says:

    People are WAAAAAY overblowing this.

    Having finally seen the video, I have to say that the suspension’s gotta be for the kick alone. The contact was nothing more than a PK-worthy foul and possible yellow card.

    It’s unfortunate that Salinas was injured, but that’s a pretty weak “tackle” in my opinion.

  49. solles says:

    Marquez is a thug who needs to finish his career in the Mexican league, im sure theres tons of clubs there that would have him.

  50. LoS says:

    only 3 games, perfect…. “Bearhug” cmon yea he grabbed him but it wasnt all that. the kick to the face should of got him the 3games not bc he fell on top of him. hit the weight room Shea and grow some, learn how to defend yourself.

  51. Shane says:

    This is a joke. But what is even worse is that NY would bring a guy like that to MLS in the first place. How do you not know what that guy is about unless you are clueless about your market in the United States.

  52. Shane says:

    And why does the fine need to be undisclosed? Transparency please. That guy is making a ton of money; how much you fine him means something

  53. solles says:

    he certainly has a history of rashly stupid decisions, added to the fact that he can’t play anymore and he’s just dangerous.

  54. BenH says:

    Very well said (the only thing you can really suspend him for is the kick after Salinas goes down. Holding during a corner is not grievous enough to suspend a player – or we’d have one suspended every game):

    “Yes — and I imagine that’s why he got the suspension. The injury was a freakish result from the kind of in-the-box clutching and pushing that goes on during every kick.

    As I wrote before, I doubt Rafa meant to take Salinas down. In fact, the kick suggests that Rafa was pissed at Salinas for going down, probably thinking that Shea was angling for a PK call.”

  55. solles says:

    The same could have been said about Blanco…

  56. Neruda says:

    As an RSL fan I am glad RSL played RB while Marquez was suspended. He decides to lash out at random times. The three games is about right though and RB have to be assessing their options now. How can a team pay someone so much money to only have them get suspended so often?

  57. Brain Guy says:

    We’re quibbling here, folks. There’s no significant difference between three games and five games for Marquez because except for defensive gaffes and hard fouls he’s generally invisible on the field anyway.

  58. Cairo says:

    Worst DP ever? I know there were worse guys on the field, but Marquez is not only a mediocre to bad player, he’s also a publicity nightmare and, I would say, the most hated player in the league and (probably) on his own team.

  59. Lex Luthor says:

    for every feel good story or hero there’s a villian. Mullen and Marquez are it. Mullen may not put alot of people in the seats but i bet you marquez does.

  60. Delorno says:

    As much as I dislike Marquez, he spent most of his professional career playing for arguably the best club team in the history of football (Barcelona), and he helped them win every single trophy there is to win. Hard to argue against that.

  61. MLS says:

    I think that’s more of an issue. The fact that he gets in trouble again and again. They really need to be harder on him.

  62. Conrad says:

    Me too. Why would he kick the guy unless — in whatever indefensible, lunatic, egomaniac state Márquez was in — he thought the guy did something to “deserve” it.
    I don’t think Rafa is a legitimate sociopath. Big difference between being that and just being an entitled prick.

  63. Conrad says:

    I see what you’re doing there!
    You’re taking Realist’s emotionless, factual representation of the incident…and ignoring it. So what you’re saying is…it’s not fair? Got it.

  64. Conrad says:

    Not that Messing isn’t wrong, but I’d be careful about aligning myself with ol’ Shep. Nice guy, but about as sharp as a bag of wet mice.

  65. LIUnited says:

    While Marquez’s name may have put people in the seats 5 years ago and since he played at the “hallowed” Barcelona. But anyone that has seen his forgettable performances in MLS would never say I am spending my money on a ticket to see Marquez. As a New Yorker that is waiting for the return of the Cosmos (especially considering how the metrobulls have historically been run), I would spend money to see Henry and Cooper this year. Last year Henry, Luke Rodgers added excitement when he played, and Tim Ream.

  66. The Imperative Voice says:

    I think this is displaced anger towards Marquez in general and about Salinas getting hurt. People don’t usually completely wrap you up or end up collar-boned as a result but people are in the broader sense grabbing and tugging in the box like this every day. I’ve gotten a yellow before for pulling and tugging on a player running down the sideline, and then clumsily running up their back like Marquez did. It looks like a football tackle but I hope no one actually thinks it was a designed football tackle, and the supposed face kick is so innnocuous I think it basically reflects tangled players getting back up. Trust me I once kneed someone prone who took me to ground in a college game, if he meant to kick him in the face there’d be windup coming in and probably blood afterwards.

    It’s not a positive situation because Salinas got hurt and is out, but the penalty should reflect the intended crime and not the result. Because if we’re suspending people for this why not awkward, unintended tackles that hurt people? Cause if the lead factor is that Salinas is out x games then that should be the lead factor when someone accidentally knicks an ankle or knee and that player’s out. In reality, it should be a suspension reflecting the intent… at most here reflecting a taboo takedown that was not all that intentional. Yellow most days, red on an unusual one, one game suspension MAX.

    Bear in mind we have punishment inflation now because MLS is taking all this to heart this year.

    Personally I think Marquez is a massive waste but I’d prefer a more objective system of punishments and less of emotional campaigns to punish player x for unsightly things caught on camera, which in reality are common everyday soccer. Save this for the Mullan tackles.

  67. Scott says:

    Only 3 games???? What an absolute disgrace!

  68. heff says:

    I am surprised at the tone of this comment string. Watching this in real time I saw a foul that in most games would go without a call let alone a card or suspension.

    Defenders all around the league an the world are taught to wrap up forwards in the box on set plays at an early age. No one, players included (except for Ronaldo perhaps)ever complain about it for more than a few seconds after the ball is cleared.

    Salinas broke his collarbone, a product of the awkward way the two players fell. 9 out of 10 times he would have bounced up without issue and the game would have gone on.

    I am not a Marquez apologist, but all the whining on this board anytime he touches another player is annoying. He is a rough player, but that is a role this not foreign to Defenders/defensive midfielders throughout the sport. SBI has a column today on the SKC’s “bruiser”, Collins. Perhaps it is just because he is Mexican? Either that or LD has alot of free time today and is trolling the boards under a number of usernames.

    The kick after the play while perhaps unintentional, was at the very least reckless and a game suspension for the whole incident is warranted. But to those of you who are calling for him to be thrown out of the league? Really??? Would you prefer that we adopt AYSO rules at the pro level? That would make for one hell of a great sport, wouldn’t it.

  69. heff says:

    Agreed 100%. The league is trying to reduce injuries through malicious play. But to suspend players for pedestrian fouls that happen to cause an injury is a bit extreme.

    Where does it stop. Does every injury require a suspension of someone? Where do we draw the line; charlie horses, cramps, hurt egos?

    Were not talking about some wild malicious tackle here or some sort of indoctrined “bounty” system. It was a clumsy play, give him a 1 game suspension and leave it at that.

    Everyone needs to take a minute and settle down.

  70. Neuwerld says:

    That’s not an accurate description of Chavez’s tackle. It was a scissor from more the side than the back. No studs. 1 game is fair.

  71. Chuck says:

    On his way to America…

    The mexican club.

  72. JoeW says:

    This isn’t the worst or even close to the worst foul MLS has seen recently. But Marquez has done stuff like this before–punishment is supposed to escalate. And he severely hurt a player. I’m not saying anyone who injures someone gets suspended. But it’s clearly a foul (even if there is a lot of clutching and grabbing on corners), he clearly kicks him, the player is out a while and Marquez is a repeat offender. 3 games is too little.

  73. Gnarls says:

    Wow, that’s an absurdly light suspension. My inner conspiracy theorist believes MLS went easy on him to appease the Mexican television demographic.

  74. BrianK says:

    Wow,….as a RBNY supporter I was hoping this clown would get 10 games. He is trash. Plain and simple. What he did was not your typical pushing, pulling, jostling in the box. It is obvious he intended to fall on Salinas and he did exactly what he hoped he would do injure his opponent . The sooner they offload this piece of crap the better. He is a disgrace to the uniform and the league.

  75. sciroccer says:

    I still believe if the league wants to stop these cheap plays they need to make a rule that the attacking player is out for as long as the injured player is! 3 games is a vacation for him. WEAK AGAIN MLS!!!

  76. Modibo says:

    LOL! Good one about Chavez!

  77. Spike says:

    Realist only uses emotional Red Bull fan logic buddy.

  78. PurpleGold says:

    Three Games!? Shanahan is clearly out of his mind!

  79. marco says:

    I agree with NYRB announcer Shep Messing suggesting,

    There is something wrong with Rafa Marquez beyond football.

  80. Roger says:

    Nice post my friend. I agree.

  81. Josh says:

    In Marquez’s defense, he’s always had problems with American players, so being in MLS must be driving the guy absolutely bonkers.

  82. Josh says:

    And just in case it wasn’t clear, yes I’m joking. He deserves at least five games, and frankly I wish the NYRB would just sell him to a USL side.

  83. tim says:

    MLS needs to retroactively suspend theguy whobroke David Ferrerias ankle last year… David is still out of ation for Dallas!

  84. This Guy says:

    …and to add. There is nothing wrong with a properly executed scissor tackle. A guy named Maldini perfected it and had a great career utilizing it. He passed it along to his son that made a career at it; won multiple CLs with it. Now the grandson applies it quit nicely in this video too.
    link to

  85. John says:

    The Disciplinary Committee’s power are too broad and it is being overused. It should only be able to give out suspensions/fines for infractions the actual game ref spotted and issued a card for. In society, you don’t expect to be convicted of a crime without being caught and charged by police. If the police aren’t catching the crimes, improve the police department. You can’t possibly implement this system fairly. Players aren’t going to want to come play in this league. Fans, eventually, are not going to want to watch the league. You are messing with the very competitive balance of the game. This will quickly make MLS look like the USSR of soccer leagues.

  86. Becks says:

    I’d be interested to know if the broken collar bone was caused by the fall or the kick. Either way Marquez has been a terrible, over-priced, under performing, misguided, disruptive acquisition for NYRB.

  87. The Imperative Voice says:

    So if I chase you down full speed studs up into your leg bones but you somehow emerge fine it’s 1 game but if I accidentally fall on you in a corner kick tangle, break your collarbone, and you’re out 8 weeks, I get 8 weeks too? I’m more worried about headhunting, I want the guy getting 8 weeks to have committed 8 weeks’ worth of foul. Mullan, maybe….I still think that’s excessive…..but multigame for getting tangled up? At least some of this is him being punished for (a) being unpopular Rafa and (b) hurting Salinas, even though that’s an unusual outcome for players tangled up in the box.

    In college I once got tangled up with the feet of an opposing player going down the sideline, and basically one arm tackled him to the ground as we fell. Yellow, stayed in game, no suspension obviously. Right play this might be a borderline red. But 3 games? Reminds me of when NCAA decided one season to card people for cussing, even at one’s self…..first game I get a card for cussing myself for hitting a 20 yard shot over the bar. Two weeks later the directive loses steam and no one cares. I’m not a fan of trendy approaches to reffing/punishing.

  88. This Guy says:

    This is the single dumbest comment I have ever read on this site. You are stating that in “real-life”; criminal charges shouldn’t be brought against somebody unless a police officer witnesses the crime? …… and you throw in a Soviet reference at the end?