The World Cup-winning Spanish midfielder has agreed to spend another season with Premier League heavyweights at Old Trafford
Juan Mata has admitted to snubbing other offers in order to sign a new contract with Manchester United and extend his association with the Red Devils.
The World Cup-winning Spaniard has committed to another 12 months at Old Trafford, with fresh terms agreed as he hit free agency.
Approaches were received from outside of Manchester, with the 33-year-old midfielder still having plenty to offer, and future options were carefully weighed up before making a decision.
What has been said?
Asked by United’s official website whether signing a new deal was a no-brainer, Mata said: “No, to be honest, you have to think about it.
“Of course, because I was a free agent at the end of my contract and, as is normal in the football world, you receive some calls from different clubs and think about maybe potential new stages in your career but, on the other hand, the feeling of being at this club and especially because of how last season went, probably the most difficult season in my life, it didn’t feel natural to me to leave that way.
“Of course, also I’m staying because I still believe I can give so much to the team and I think the club believes the same.
“I’m very, very hopeful and excited to still win trophies here. It’s very special to be a player at this club and it’s even more special to win trophies and that’s why I’m here and all the players are here.”
Mata’s record at United
The classy playmaker was snapped up from Chelsea by David Moyes in the winter transfer window of 2014.
Mata has gone on to take in 273 outings for United, registering 51 goals along the way.
He has helped them to FA Cup, League Cup and Europa League glory and is determined to bring a five-year wait for major silverware to a close in 2022.
There is also a chance that he could pass the 300-appearance mark in the upcoming campaign, allowing him to join an elite group of Red Devils.
Mata added: “I didn’t know that it was the ninth [season] already, but time flies.
“Of course I’ve lived many good moments at this club, other difficult ones, but yes, I’m staying and I’m very much looking forward for what I hope will be a good season for the team and for myself.”
United are set to open their 2021-22 campaign with a home date against old adversaries Leeds on August 14.