Ex-Aston Villa striker Luke Moore credits former Tottenham defender for saving his MLS career

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The 29-year-old Englishman was on the verge of leaving the States after a poor start with Chivas USA, until then-Toronto FC boss Ryan Nelsen got in touch.

While Toronto FC striker Luke Moore is now loving life in MLS, the former England Under-21 international has admitted to the Toronto Sun that his feelings were somewhat different just 10 months ago.

Having moved to now-defunct Chivas USA from Turkish club Elazıgspor ahead of the 2014 season, Moore made just two starts in six goalless appearances over the first two months of the campaign, as the league’s bottom-dwellers picked up one win from their opening nine matches.

Having grown disillusioned at his situation, the former Aston Villa and West Bromwich Albion man was on the verge of packing up his things and heading back home across the Atlantic come May, until receiving a call from former Toronto FC head coach Ryan Nelsen.

“I didn’t know what I was getting myself into,” he said of his Chivas stint. “I was going home. I wasn’t happy [but] he told me great things about Toronto.”

Soon traded in a three-team deal to the Canadian club, Moore would go on to record six goals and four assists in 27 matches during his debut campaign at BMO Field, with most of his 22 starts spent deputising for often-injured compatriot Jermain Defoe.

An offseason of upheaval followed after the team missed out on a postseason spot in disastrous fashion, with Defoe one of those to depart, but Moore is back and, what’s more, pleased to be.

US forward Jozy Altidore’s high-profile arrival from Sunderland in the Defoe swap deal has restricted him to only 10 minutes of action in first two games of the season, but the Birmingham-native insists he’s more than content with his current role.

“Everyone is treating me top-class,” he said. “Great facilities. Great fans. Stadium is improving. This is a good franchise to be at.

“I always wanted to come here. I came here preseason with a few teams. We played against Toronto FC one time and we had a great time.”

Moore also stresses that, if some of his former teammates back in Europe are thinking about a stateside switch, then the standard of the league might surprise them.

“The one thing I’ll say is that MLS teams — although ability-wise it’s not a top league — they try and play the right way,” he added. “They don’t just get their heads down. It’s a results business so there’s always a temptation to play ugly football. Most teams try and play football and play on the ground.

“You’ve got to be able to do it financially, though. If you’re not stable, you’re not coming. It’s that simple.”

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