Manchester United’s Juan Mata hails ‘really important’ win over Derby

by Tanveer Arayan

Juan Mata has praised his Manchester United teammates following Friday’s “really important” FA Cup win over Derby on Friday.

Goals from Wayne Rooney, Daley Blind and Mata sealed a 3-1 win for Man United and, with it, their progression into the next round of the Cup.

United went into the game under huge pressure following the 1-0 loss against Southampton last weekend but they were much improved against Derby.

“It was really important for us,” Mata said.

“It’s not easy to come here to Derby. Even though they are not in the Premier League they are a good team, they press, they are physically very strong and I think we did a good job today.

“We came here to play football. We played much quicker than in the last games [and had] more chances to score, and I think it was at the end of the day a very good performance.”

Asked how far United are hoping to go in the FA Cup, Mata replied: ”Step by step. I know it’s been a few years, the last time Manchester United won it, but I think we have to focus on each round. Today we did our job and we look forward to the next game.”

Juan Mata 47

The FA Cup represents United’s most realistic chance of silverware this term and they will be grateful that they are through to the next round.

Derby didn’t provide much by way of resistance at Pride Park but United played with a conviction that they have been missing as of late and they will be encouraged by the performance. Next up for Louis van Gaal’s side is a Premier League clash against Stoke City.

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