- LocationSeville, Spain
- Squad Number18
Spanish full-back Alberto Moreno capped a rapid ascent to the heights of European football and strengthened Brendan Rodgers’ options in defence by becoming Liverpool’s eighth signing of the summer in August 2014.
The 22-year-old arrived at Anfield following months of speculation linking him with the Reds and the apparent interest was little surprise given the remarkable progress the left-sided defender had achieved during the previous 18 months.
Moreno was born in Seville on July 5, 1992 and took the fledgling steps of his professional football career with Sevilla, a club renowned for providing regular opportunities to young players and allowing natural talent to flourish in La Liga.
Boasting laudable athleticism and blessed with blistering acceleration over short and long distances, Alberto thrives on scampering forward along the flank to support attacks with crosses or dangerous shots of his own in opposition territory.
His maiden appearance for the Sevilla first team occurred as a late substitute during a 1-0 defeat at Athletic Bilbao in April 2012, though he would have to wait almost a year to genuinely break through at senior level.
A first start for the Andalusian outfit followed 10 months on, with Moreno clocking up the full 90 minutes in a win over Deportivo La Coruna. It was the start of his rise and a total of 15 games were tallied before the 2012-13 campaign concluded.
The full-back’s international experience was enhanced in the summer of 2013, playing four matches – including the final against Fabio Borini’s Italy – as Spain cantered to the European U21 Championship title in Israel.
If that season was one of progression, the next surpassed his most hopeful ambitions as he cemented a permanent berth in the Sevilla starting line-up and contributed to an impressive finish in the Spanish top flight and European glory.
Alberto’s first senior goal was struck at Real Valladolid that October, a signpost of what was to unfold in the remainder of the campaign. Two more efforts were added to his record, which also showed 29 league matches and a fifth-place finish.
It was in continental competition where Sevilla particularly thrived, however; Maribor, Real Betis, Porto and Valencia were successively seen off in the Europa League knockout stages to set up a final clash with new teammate Lazar Markovic’s Benfica.
The latter was not involved in the showpiece due to suspension, but Moreno was – he battled for the entire 120 minutes in Turin and ultimately hoisted aloft the trophy when his team were crowned winners after a penalty shootout.
Spain coach Vicente del Bosque had taken note and Alberto was named in his country’s provisional squad for the World Cup in Brazil, although he was later cut from the final selection before a dismal campaign for the reigning champions.
He therefore remained on three senior international caps, having made his debut at that level by playing the entirety of a qualifier against Georgia in October 2013 that was won 2-0.
Another man who had been tracking Moreno’s progression was Rodgers, who finally captured the left-back shortly ahead of the 2014-15 season kicking off, adding another highly talented player to develop in his burgeoning Liverpool squad.
The Spaniard was handed a first appearance for the Reds at Manchester City in August 2014 and, six days later, quickly endeared himself to Kopites by capping a 3-0 victory at Tottenham Hotspur with a sensational solo run and blasted finish.
Over the 2014-15 season, the left-back established himself in the first XI, as his defensive ability and attacking instincts made him a firm favourite in L4.