Rodríguez playing for Argentina in 2012
|Full name||Maximiliano Rubén Rodríguez|
|Date of birth||2 January 1981|
|Place of birth||Rosario, Argentina|
|Height||1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)|
|Playing position||Winger / Attacking midfielder|
|Newell's Old Boys|
|1999–2002||Newell's Old Boys||57||(20)|
|2012–2017||Newell's Old Boys||138||(48)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 1 April 2018
Maximiliano Rubén "Maxi" Rodríguez (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈmaksi roˈðɾiɣes]; born 2 January 1981) is an Argentine footballer who plays for Uruguayan club Peñarol. Nicknamed La Fiera (Beast in English), he is commonly used as a winger on both flanks but can also operate as an attacking midfielder.
Rodríguez arrived in Spain in his early 20s, and went on to spend the bulk of his professional career there, playing for Espanyol and Atlético Madrid and amassing La Liga totals of 232 games and 58 goals over the course of eight seasons. He also spent two years with Liverpool in England.
Newell's / Espanyol
In 2002, Rodríguez moved to La Liga to join RCD Espanyol, his league debut coming on 2 September in a 0–2 loss against Real Madrid. He played 37 matches in every campaign with the Catalans, scoring 15 goals during his last.
At the start of the 2005–06 season, Rodríguez moved to Atlético Madrid for a transfer fee of €5 million, where he continued to post consistent numbers. In his second year he suffered, alongside teammate (and winger) Martin Petrov, a serious knee injury (anterior cruciate ligament), which limited him to only ten appearances.
On 10 November 2009, Rodríguez put four goals past UD Marbella in the Copa del Rey round-of-32 second leg, in an eventual 6–0 home win (8–0 aggregate). After the 2007 departure of Fernando Torres to Liverpool, he was selected as the new club captain; he took no part in the Colchoneros' 2009–10 UEFA Europa League campaign, which ended in conquest.
On 13 January 2010, Rodríguez completed a free transfer to Liverpool, signing a three-and-a-half-year deal. After securing his signature, Rafael Benítez described him as "comfortable on the ball, can pass and keep possession. He is good at getting into the box and scoring goals and a good finisher", and the player was given the number 17 shirt, making his debut for the club as a second-half substitute in a Premier League match against Stoke City on the 16th; his first full start came a week and a half later, in a 0–0 away draw to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
In his first games for Liverpool, Rodríguez picked up two league assists, both of which were for former Atlético teammate Torres. He scored his first competitive goal in a 4–0 win over Burnley at Turf Moor on 25 April 2010, playing the full 90 minutes.
2010–11 was a good individual season for Rodríguez, who netted ten league goals for the team, including hat-tricks against Birmingham City (5–0 home win) and Fulham (5–2 at Craven Cottage). In the latter match, he scored twice in the opening seven minutes – the first being just after 32 seconds – and completed his exhibition with a 25-yard strike.
On 8 July 2011, Rodríguez switched his jersey number to 11, and he scored two goals in a pre-season friendly with Malaysia shortly after, which finished with a 6–3 win. On 24 August, he was given his first start of the season in a League Cup tie against Exeter City, and netted the second in an eventual 3–1 away success.
On 20 November 2011, Rodríguez scored against Chelsea following a build-up with teammate Craig Bellamy, with Liverpool winning it 2–1 at Stamford Bridge. Nine days later, against the same opponent, in the same venue and again with the decisive pass being made by the Welshman, he found the net in a 2–0 League Cup triumph, and his team went on to win the latter competition.
On 26 December 2011, Rodríguez scored just his second league goal of the season in a 1–1 draw at Anfield against Blackburn Rovers. He netted his last two against the same adversary on 10 April 2012, for a 3–2 away win.
Return to Argentina
On 13 July 2012, after 73 official games and 17 goals scored, Rodríguez left Liverpool and returned to his first professional club Newell's Old Boys. He wrote an open letter to the Reds fans before his departure, thanking them for their support in his two-and-a-half-year stint.
Rodríguez played his first match for the club since leaving on 5 August 2012, in a 0–0 draw against Club Atlético Independiente. According to him, football in his country was now "worse than ten years ago". In June 2013, he helped the team win the Torneo Final, being awarded the Alumni by directors and former directors of Argentinian football late in the year.
Rodríguez won the 2001 FIFA World Youth Championship with the Argentine under-20s on home soil, scoring four goals in seven matches including the first and last for the eventual winners. He made his full side debut in a friendly match against Japan on 8 June 2003, in which he also found the net.
After being part of the 2005 FIFA Confederations Cup squad, Rodríguez was called for the 2006 FIFA World Cup by national boss José Pékerman and, on 16 June, he scored twice in Argentina's 6–0 victory over Serbia and Montenegro in the group stage. In the round-of-16, he scored the winning goal against Mexico in a 2–1 extra time victory: he controlled a cross-field pass from Juan Pablo Sorín with his chest before volleying it into the top corner of Oswaldo Sánchez's net from outside the penalty area with his left foot, in the 98th minute; in an unofficial online poll by FIFA, it was voted the best goal of the tournament.
After Argentina lost the quarter-final game against Germany on 30 June 2006, Rodríguez punched opponent Bastian Schweinsteiger in the back. FIFA fined him CHF5,000 and suspended him from two matches in the 2007 Copa América for violent conduct. However, after a serious knee injury in a friendly with Spain in October 2006, he missed the continental competition, as national team manager Alfio Basile, whom initially intended to select the player, eventually rested him for precaution.
Rodríguez scored in Diego Maradona's first game in charge of Argentina, a 0–1 friendly win in Scotland. On 19 May 2010 he was named in the squad of 23 for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and, in the last home game before the finals five days later, scored twice against Canada, netting from a freekick from a sharp angle and after receiving a pass from Carlos Tevez in an eventual 5–0 win.
In June 2014, Rodríguez made Argentina's list for the 2014 World Cup. He started in his side's opening game, a 2–1 defeat of Bosnia and Herzegovina at the Estádio do Maracanã, playing the first half before being substituted for Gonzalo Higuaín at half-time; he was only fielded again in the semi-finals against the Netherlands, converting the decisive penalty shootout attempt (0–0 after 120 minutes) to send his country to the final for the first time in 24 years.
|Newell's Old Boys||1999–2000||Argentine Primera División||6||0||0||0||0||0||6||0|
|Atlético Madrid||2005–06||La Liga||29||10||4||1||0||0||33||11|
|Newell's Old Boys||2012–13||Argentine Primera División||28||5||1||0||11||3||40||8|
|Peñarol||2017||Uruguayan Primera División||15||7||0||0||0||0||15||7|
- Atlético Madrid
- Newell's Old Boys
- Senior Level
- "List of players under written contract registered between 01/01/2010 and 31/01/2010" (PDF). The Football Association. Retrieved 7 February 2010.
- "2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil: List of players" (PDF). FIFA. 11 June 2014. p. 2. Retrieved 15 October 2014.
- "Maxi Rodríguez, entre Grecia y Uruguay" [Maxi Rodríguez, between Greece and Uruguay] (in Spanish). TyC Sports. 24 July 2017. Retrieved 20 September 2017.
- Edwards, Daniel (October 2013). "The world's top 12 attacking midfielders this season". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
- "Maxi Rodriguez's long road to payback". FIFA. 11 July 2014. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
- "Maxi, tres goles que le hacen el 'Pichichi'de la Liga" [Maxi, three goals that make him the League's 'Pichichi']. Mundo Deportivo (in Spanish). 13 September 2004. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
- "Espanyol fulminante" [Overwhelming Espanyol]. Mundo Deportivo (in Spanish). 8 November 2004. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
- "En busca del gol perdido" [In search of the lost goal] (in Spanish). Fuerza Perica. 10 March 2016. Retrieved 14 March 2016.
- "Al final llegaron a buen puerto" [Finally they agreed] (in Spanish). ESPN Deportes. 29 June 2005. Retrieved 28 August 2009.
- "Maxi Rodriguez, Petrov out for six months". ESPN Soccernet. 16 October 2006. Retrieved 28 August 2009.
- "El Marbella paga los platos rotos del derbi" [Marbella pay derby wounds]. Marca (in Spanish). 10 November 2009. Retrieved 3 January 2013.
- "Maxi makes Reds move". Sky Sports. 13 January 2010. Retrieved 13 January 2010.
- "In profile: Our new no. 17". Liverpool F.C. 13 January 2010. Archived from the original on 16 January 2010.
- Smith, Rory (16 January 2010). "Stoke City 1 Liverpool 1: match report". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 20 January 2010.
- Sanghera, Mandeep (26 January 2010). "Wolverhampton 0–0 Liverpool". BBC Sport. Retrieved 5 April 2018.
- Smith, Rory (25 April 2010). "Burnley 0 Liverpool 4: match report". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 27 May 2010.
- "Maxi stars for Reds". ESPN Soccernet. 23 April 2011. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
- "Maxi and Suarez star again for ruthless Reds". ESPN Soccernet. 9 May 2011. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
- "Jordan and Adam numbers set". Liverpool F.C. 8 July 2011. Archived from the original on 11 July 2011.
- Rich, Tim (16 July 2011). "Liverpool owner gives backing to David Ngog and Alberto Aquilani". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
- "Reds ease to win". ESPN Soccernet. 24 August 2011. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
- "Johnson returns to haunt Blues". ESPN Soccernet. 20 November 2011. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
- "Chelsea dumped out by Liverpool". ESPN Soccernet. 29 November 2011. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
- "Reds held by resilient Rovers". ESPN Soccernet. 26 December 2011. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
- "Ten-man Liverpool stopped Blackburn climbing out of the Premier League relegation zone thanks to Andy Carroll's injury-time header". BBC Sport. 10 April 2012. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
- "LFC confirm Maxi departure". Liverpool F.C. 13 July 2012. Archived from the original on 14 July 2012.
- "Maxi: An open letter to fans". Liverpool F.C. 13 July 2012. Archived from the original on 15 July 2012.
- "Maxi Rodriguez: Football in Argentina is worse now than a decade ago". Goal.com. 18 August 2012. Retrieved 24 August 2012.
- "Maxi Rodríguez recibió el premio Alumni al mejor jugador" [Maxi Rodríguez received the Alumni award for the best player]. La Capital (in Spanish). 27 November 2013. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
- "Maxi Rodríguez fue presentado oficialmente como jugador de Peñarol" [Maxi Rodríguez was officially presented as a Peñarol player] (in Spanish). C.A. Peñarol. 27 July 2017. Retrieved 4 August 2017.
- Maxi Rodríguez – FIFA competition record
- "Kirin Cup 2003". RSSSF. 10 July 2004. Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- "Argentina 6–0 Serbia & Montenegro". BBC Sport. 16 June 2006. Retrieved 17 February 2015.
- "Argentina 2–1 Mexico (aet)". BBC Sport. 24 June 2006. Retrieved 10 July 2006.
- "FIFAworldcup.com sets new standards in online coverage of football". FIFA. 13 June 2006. Retrieved 18 February 2009.
- "Rooney, Cufre and Rodriquez handed bans by FIFA". Monsters and Critics. 8 July 2006. Retrieved 10 July 2006.
- "No lo tendrá en cuenta" [Will not be considered] (in Spanish). ESPN Deportes. 14 June 2007. Retrieved 28 August 2009.
- "Maxi winner gets Maradona off the mark". UEFA. 19 November 2008. Retrieved 13 May 2010.
- "Coloccini fails to make cut for Argentina party". BBC Sport. 19 May 2010. Retrieved 27 May 2010.
- "Maradona's men run riot". ESPN Soccernet. 24 May 2010. Retrieved 27 May 2010.
- "Demichelis in Argentina squad as trio miss out". FIFA. 2 June 2014. Archived from the original on 1 July 2014. Retrieved 21 June 2014.
- "Bosnia beaten by Messi marvel". FIFA. 16 June 2014. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
- "Romero the shoot-out hero as Argentina reach final". FIFA. 9 July 2014. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
- "El golazo del "otro" primo de Maxi Rodríguez para el triunfo de la reserva leprosa" [The wonder goal of Maxi Rodríguez's "other" cousin for win of the leper reserves]. La Capital (in Spanish). 2 October 2017. Retrieved 16 March 2018.
- "Qué primo, Maxi!" [What a cousin, Maxi!]. Olé (in Spanish). 2 October 2017. Retrieved 16 March 2018.
- "Maxi Rodríguez y Diego Forlán, invitados de lujo en el nuevo videoclip de Coti" [Maxi Rodríguez and Diego Forlán, stellar guests in Coti's new video] (in Spanish). Atlético Madrid. 17 March 2009. Retrieved 28 August 2009.
- "M. Rodríguez". Soccerway. Retrieved 2 April 2014.
- Maxi Rodríguez at ESPN FC
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