Hector Moreno lands with a new team in Qatar

The veteran Mexican defender leaves Real Sociedad to join Al-Gharafa in the Qatar Stars League.

Hector Moreno surprised everybody by leaving La Liga to move to Qatar, signing a three-year contract with Al-Gharafa.

Moreno, 31, fought back from an injury to help El Tri win the Gold Cup this summer and was expected to return to Real Sociedad where he spent the past two seasons.

After making his professional debut with UNAM in the LIGA MX in 2006 at just 18 years of age, Moreno will now join his seventh team, where he hopes to find regular playing time time. His goal is to continue with Team Mexico for the near future and he knows he needs to be on the field with a club team, something he was not guaranteed by Real Sociedad.

Just before his 20th birthday, Moreno left the Pumas to sign with Holland’s AZ Alkmaar. In his second season in Europe, his club won the Eredivisie title as well as the Dutch Super Cup (2009). Moreno played four seasons with Alkmaar, scoring 6 goals with the team, before he moved to Spain to play with Espanyol.

The left-footed defender played four seasons with the Barcelona club, scoring 7 goals, then moved back to Holland to play for PSV Eindhoven. One of his teammates there was Team Mexico captain Andrés Guardado. Moreno helped “The Farmers” win the 2015-2016 Eredivisie title and followed that up with another Dutch Super Cup trophy (2016).

Moreno then accepted the challenge of playing in Serie A with Roma, but failed to find regular playing time. This forced the Culiacan native to ask for a trade and he was sent to Real Sociedad in January 2018.

Now Moreno will have an opportunity to become a regular and will get a chance to play alongside Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder. Hopefully this move gives Moreno plenty of opportunity to stay in shape, perhaps even maintaining solid form to be available for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.