Marco Estrada is an accomplished all-rounder whose shooting power and free-kick execution set him apart from his peers. Capable of playing at left-back as well in the centre of defence if necessary, his adaptability is one of the many qualities that have seen him promoted from fringe player to key performer in the eyes of Chile coach, Marcelo Bielsa.
Exhibiting a loyalty rare in modern football, Estrada has played at just two different clubs in his career, Vina del Mar-based side Everton and Universidad de Chile of Santiago, where he earned the loving sobriquet ‘The blue gunboat’. In January 2006 he represented Chile for the first time, in a U-23 match versus Denmark, seizing the occasion to score on his debut.
The proficiency of Estrada’s left foot is highly regarded in South American football circles. Coach Bielsa encourages the full-back to hit long, cross-field balls to his strikers or to bring his wingers into play. His one and only goal so far for the full national side came in qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™, a ferocious free-kick in a convincing 4-0 victory over Bolivia in Santiago last June.