Juan Mata has sent a message of gratitude to supporters following Manchester United’s 3-2 win over Southampton in the League Cup final.
Jose Mourinho‘s men raced into an early lead courtesy of a thunderbolt free-kick from Zlatan Ibrahimovic and a smart Jesse Lingard finish, only to be pegged back by two Manolo Gabbiadini goals either side of half time.
Southampton looked like the only side capable of grabbing a goal before extra time, but Ibrahimovic popped up in the 87th minute to power home a dramatic late header.
Mata, who came off at half time, dedicated this week’s blog to thanking Man United fans for their support.
“This trophy, as any other trophy that I have won through my career, has been for you,” he said. “Thank you for being an example in everything, for everyone. I will always take you with me.”
“Thank you from my heart for all your messages of support and affection.”
You were probably reminded – either by your friends, siblings or just strangers on the internet – of the fact that this was, after all, just the League Cup. The Mickey Mouse Cup. Nothing to really shout about.
But supporters will know that their side needed this; they are, it should be noted, still learning under Mourinho, and triumph at Wembley was clear evidence of this side heading in the right direction. Ahead of a crucial couple of months, with United still competing on three fronts, claiming the League Cup was the perfect galvaniser.