Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata took to his weekly blog today to reflect on Saturday’s victory against Arsenal and look forward to back-to-back home games coming up against Hull City and Stoke City.
Mata, 26, also reflected on the latest injury picked up by Luke Shaw early on in the match and the current crisis that has failed to cease during the current campaign. The Spaniard was a regular fixture throughout October during Wayne Rooney‘s suspension but has appeared sporadically since the captain’s return.
“The bad news were Luke Shaw’s injury, and unfortunately we are suffering too many of them so far this season, but the most important thing is to keep winning games and wait for the team-mates to be fully fit,” wrote Mata.
Shaw’s ankle injury was the 40th picked up by Manchester United since the season kicked off in August and with concerns at the other end of the field over Robin van Persie’s current contribution, Mata could find himself back in the team should Louis van Gaal decided to move Rooney up the pitch into van Persie’s position.
Mata scored the winner after coming off the bench against Crystal Palace last weekend but despite his return to the bench against Arsenal, the midfielder still had time to praise the performance of his team mates, particularly that of Spanish compatriot, David De Gea.
“They (Arsenal) created good chances and it was tough, but we managed to bring the three points back to Manchester thanks to David’s great performance, Antonio’s shot that ended up in an own goal and Wayne’s clinical finish. We are fourth now and we want to keep climbing the table.”
The win on Saturday moves Mata and his team mates into the top four and with two winnable home games coming up, Manchester United could put some daylight between themselves and their trailing rivals before they embark on matches against Southampton and Liverpool in the lead up to Christmas.
Next Tuesday will be the club’s first midweek match since the humiliation against MK Dons back in August and with two games in such a short space of time, Mata can certainly expect to see some minutes given the patchy form of van Persie and other attackers such as Adnan Januzaj.