Juan Mata came off the bench and became the goalscoring hero for Manchester United in today’s 1-0 win over Crystal Palace.
The Spaniard has come under some deserved criticism after poor recent performances after he was drafted back into the side in Wayne Rooney‘s absence but turned the game around for United today.
It has been a difficult time for both Mata and the club so far this season and he is keen to build on this victory.
“I always try to do my best for the team in every training and game,” he said after the match.
“I’m happy today to score and the 3 points.
“We knew we had to be patient, they came here to defend, but in the end we got the points.
“We are suffering when we don’t win, it’s been difficult so far and hopefully we can change it.”
Louis van Gaal was happy with Mata’s winner as well: “He didn’t change our formation or style but he scores goals – because of that, we won.”
Adnan Januzaj started against Palace but was very poor out on the right wing and Mata’s game changing performance from the bench now puts him ahead of the young Belgian in the pecking order.
It’s been a tough season for Mata who is yet to find his identity in Louis van Gaal‘s side but his winning goal against Palace will fill him with some much needed confidence ahead of the two week international break.