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Former Liverpool star reveals damaging Klopp snub forced him to turn down new five-year contract

Former Liverpool defender Alberto Moreno has revealed he turned down the offer of a new five-year contract at Anfield before leaving the club to join Villarreal in 2019.

The Spanish left-back endured a mixed spell on Merseyside prior to his exit two years ago, having fallen out of favour with Jurgen Klopp towards the end of his Reds stay.

Moreno played 41 games in all competitions during his debut campaign and a further 50 the following year. However, his appearances become less frequent after a number of poor defensive performances.

Liverpool’s Europa League final defeat to Sevilla in May 2016 was also an evening to forget for the 29-year-old. That led to him being replaced by James Milner the following season.

The arrival of Andrew Robertson from Hull in a bargain £8million deal was the final nail in the coffin for Moreno.

Reflecting on his time on Merseyside, Moreno admitted that the injury he suffered during the 2017/18 season, when his form had picked up, paved the way for Robertson to become Klopp’s No.1 left-back.

Moreno told El Periodico Mediterraneo: “They were beautiful years, but strange things also happened and others where I had bad luck.

“I started the first two years playing constantly, but then, in the third year, the manager put James Milner at left-back. I didn’t play at all that year and it wasn’t easy,” he said.

“After that, I spoke with Jurgen Klopp about my situation and he told me he was counting on me. I had a great pre-season and was a starter in the Premier League. I played every game in both the league and the Champions League.

“In fact, Lopetegui called me and I returned to the Spain team. But I was unlucky, and in the last game of the Champions League group stage, I injured my ankle.

“The coach put in Robertson, who was my substitute. And the truth is that we must admit that he did very well and won the title.

“In fact, Klopp, who I get along phenomenally and is always on my face, told me: ‘Alberto, I trust you, but now I can’t take [Robertson] off’.”

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Time to move on

Moreno made only five appearances for the Reds during his final season at the club. By that time Robertson was fully established in the team.

The 29-year-old then departed on a free transfer in 2019, having reached the end of his contract. However, Moreno has revealed that he was offered the chance to stay.

He added: “In my fifth year, I was offered to renew, for another five years. I said no. We’d had many years in England.

“I have three children and spoke with my wife. We decided that the best thing was to return to Spain. I just wanted to go back to Spain.”

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