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Mexico's Moreno reveals Barcelona chance before injury in 2014

Mexico and Al-Gharafa defender Hector Moreno recalls going up against Luis Suarez in the Noord-Hollandse derby.

Mexico center-back Hector Moreno came close to signing for Barcelona back in 2014, until a fractured left tibia against the Netherlands at the World Cup set him off the track.

The 32-year-old Al-Gharafa defender was playing for Espanyol ahead of Brazil 2014 and there had been rumors that the Sinaloa native could be moving on, with clubs such as Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur also mentioned.

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"Things surely would've been different [without the injury] because there weren't only talks with Barcelona, but I had the possibility of signing before the World Cup," Moreno said in an interview with TUDN.

The possibility of impressing at the World Cup and then signing for a big club was put on hold when Moreno fractured his leg in the first half of Mexico's 2-1 loss to Netherlands in Brazil when he challenged Dutch winger Arjen Robben.

"I felt really good in all aspects, the tactical layout and my teammates helped me stand out," Moreno said. "What happened, happened, it was tough, I had to put my life on pause."

Moreno stayed with Espanyol and eventually transferred to PSV Eindhoven in August 2015, rejecting offers to move outside of Spain in the interim.

"Even when I was injured I had the chance to sign for another team and also when I returned, but I didn't think I was prepared to leave, it was difficult, but I wouldn't change it for anything," said Moreno, who added he might have never met his wife if he signed for Barca.

The Pumas youth product moved on to Roma in 2017, before signing for Real Sociedad six months later.

Moreno's latest transfer was to Al-Gharafa in Qatar in July 2019 and he admitted that while he could've continued in Europe, the future of his family was an important factor.

"I think I could've stayed and been able to compete in any part of Europe," Moreno said. "[The move to Qatar] was for a thousand reasons, obviously the economic element was also an influence, thinking about the future for my family and for me."

Moreno also said that he believes the Qatar 2022 World Cup will be a success and the fact the stadiums are so close together will aid logistics.

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