Marquez eyes new Barcelona deal

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The Independent Football

Mexican defender Rafael Marquez is eager to try and secure a new long-term contract with runaway Primera Liga leaders Barcelona.

The 30-year-old's current deal runs out at the end of next season, but Marquez would ideally like to stay put beyond that time.

He told Marca: "I have not yet spoken to the club, but I want to stay here as long as possible.

"I am not in a rush, but to relax everyone it might be better if it is spoken about soon and the future decided upon.

"My priority is to stay with Barcelona, but there is a world outside, there would be other doors open and I could go elsewhere.

"I trust that everything will be sorted before the end of the season, because I want to stay and I do not think there will be any problems."

Meanwhile, midfielder Xavi has backed the Catalan giants to win at least two trophies this season.

The 29-year-old Spain international has tipped Barca for a domestic double, but expects possible success in the Champions League to be a far more difficult target.

He told Marca: "Ten points is a considerable gap (in the league) and we are in a great run of form.

"We are dominating our opponents and playing good football. We are relaxed and I expect to continue this way. Titles can be won this year.

"We have a good chance of winning the league and the Copa del Rey - we must take this chance to do so.

"As for the Champions League, we must be wary because we have not historically done well in the competition, although we have a lot of desire to win it."

Xavi's midfield colleague Andres Iniesta faces a couple of weeks on the sidelines after suffering a hamstring injury during training.

At Getafe, veteran Romanian defender Cosmin Contra is expecting to leave the Primera Liga club at the end of the current campaign.

The 33-year-old wing-back joined the Madrid outfit from Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2005, but believes his time with Getafe is coming to an end.

He told AS: "If there was an intention for me to stay then there would be discussion between the president and myself.

"For the time being he has not approached me and I have not assumed anything, but what I know is that I will give my all to the club.

"I have had four very good years here, I have enjoyed them and have been welcomed.

"I will continue to be very professional until the end of the season and then we will see what happens."