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El Tri standout Moreno leaves Roma for Real Sociedad

AS Roma v Torino FC - TIM Cup

ROME, ITALY - DECEMBER 20: Hector Moreno of AS Roma in action during the TIM Cup match between AS Roma and Torino FC at Olimpico Stadium on December 20, 2017 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images)

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When last we caught up with Hector Moreno, he was set to be a major player in AS Roma’s bid for a Serie A title.

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Just over six months later, he’s returning to La Liga to help arrest a relegation slide... and lead a Europa League run.

The 30-year-old El Tri defender has left Rome for Real Sociedad on a $7.5 million deal, one day after his new club sold Inigo Martinez to Athletic Bilbao for about $40 million.

The club says he’s signed a deal to keep him with the txuri-urdin through the 2020-21 season. The move will allow him consistent playing time ahead of the World Cup.

Moreno made just five Serie A appearances for i Lupi, and Roma went 5-0 in those matches including a pair of clean sheets in his lone starts.

Real Sociedad is on a 1W-3D-6L run in league play and has won one match since a Nov. 5 defeat of Eibar. They have progressed to the Round of 32 in the Europa League, where they meet Red Bull Salzburg on Feb. 15 and 22.

Follow @NicholasMendola