Like all of United’s players, Mata didn’t have the best of performances against Fulham yesterday and the game was a microcosm of United’s season so far – frustratingly one-dimensional and simply not good enough.
How can a team with 75% possession knock in 81 crosses against the side who are bottom of the Premier League and not win? Fulham parked the bus yet still managed to score twice, the statistics were staggering in every respect.
Right now, Moyes still has the support of match going reds because he’s our manager but with every passing game bringing no signs of anything turning around, frustration is reaching fever pitch and although Mata insists that the feeling is good in the dressing room, the players must share that frustration.
Despite that, Mata tried to avoid using excuses for the current situation and pointed towards Arsenal as a game where the fortunes could be turned around.
“Honestly, I think football is being cruel with us,” Mata said in his blog.
“Thank you so much for your messages of support. I feel I’m facing a new challenge in my career and I look forward to keep improving and to learn from every situation. The results may be better or worse but I’m going to give everything I have to help the team in every game, trying to enjoy football as I’ve always done, in the good and the bad moments.”
“We did everything to get the three points, but in the end this is about goals and Fulham scored in the last-minute… It seems impossible if you look at the stats, but we couldn’t win and it would have been a very important victory.
“It hurts even more because in the second half we managed to come back after Fulham’s early goal, and the game seemed to be under control with Carrick’s goal. But when the score is so tight you may suffer at the very end, as it happened this time.
“It was the same a week ago against Stoke City, with two players injured and one goal after a deflection. It seems that luck is not on our side, but you know that I don’t like to give excuses. We have to get better and improve our shooting accuracy, because we got many times to the box and could have scored more than two goals.
“I’m sure we will make it, but there are less and less games to play so the sooner the better… There is something we can always count on: the team’s passion and sacrifice. We did fight until the end, and that’s what I felt on the pitch, but once again we can’t give excuses. The way to carry on is to stick together, the team and the fans, learn from mistakes and be positive, and we will show the character this team has always had.”
If Stoke and Fulham were must win games and we didn’t win either, what does that make the game against Arsenal on Wednesday?