Five-time European Cup winner Marquitos dies

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Former Real Madrid defender and five-time European Cup winner Marcos Alonso Imaz, better known as Marquitos, has died aged 78, the Spanish club said in a statement on Wednesday.

Marquitos signed for Real Madrid from Racing Santander in 1954, joining a team that went on to win the continent's top club competition in the first five years of its existence from 1956 and 1960.

Alongside players such as Alfredo Di Stefano, Ferenc Puskas and Gento he also helped them to win five Spanish league titles, a Spanish Cup and the Intercontinental Cup.

He made 228 appearances with the club, until he left in 1963. He also made two appearances for Spain.

"He was a defender from the north," a former team mate Pachin was quoted as having said about Marquitos in Wednesday's El Pais.

"He wasn't very gifted technically but he had a natural talent in anticipation."

Marquitos, whose son and grandson Marcos Alonso, who is at Bolton Wanderers in England, both became footballers, will be buried in his native Santander on Thursday.