Juan Mata has agreed a new one-year contract with Manchester United, the club has announced.
There had been speculation as to whether the Spaniard would leave the club after his previous contract expired two days ago.
Reports had linked him with a return to his previous club, Valencia, and to FC Barcelona after United’s new contract offer cut his salary from £170,000 to £100,000 per week.
Whether those figures are correct and/or whether United have made any improved offer since is yet to be confirmed.
Despite playing only 18 games and 891 minutes of football for United last season, Mata’s presence at the club is seen as important off the pitch as on. He is known to be an excellent mentor for some of the younger players and a popular figure in the dressing room.
It has also been reported recently that United are grooming the Spain international for a role in their sports management team, as a potential future director of football or similar.
‘The 33-year-old completed a transfer from Premier League rivals Chelsea in January 2014 and has since made 273 appearances as a Red, scoring 51 goals in the process.
‘His impressive tally of strikes includes a memorable brace against Liverpool at Anfield in 2015 and an all-important equaliser in the victorious 2016 Emirates FA Cup final versus Crystal Palace.’
While some fans believed it was time to cut ties, others have reacted positively to the news.
‘I’m happy with this. We’ve got plans for him to go into coaching when he retires, so next year as well as remaining a useful squad player he can take his coaching badges,’ said one fan on Twitter.
‘Also he’s highly respected and great with our youngsters which is what we need.’
Tbh I'm happy with this. I mean we've got plans for him to go into coaching when he retires so next year aswell as remaining a useful.squad player he can take his coaching badges. Also he's highly respected & great with our youngsters which is what we need.
— Chris Silvester (@ChrisSilveste14) July 2, 2021
‘The football world is not black and white,’ said another.
‘He brings a lot more to the club than what happens on the pitch. And he can still play.’
Because the football world isnt black and White. He brings a lot more to the club than what happens on the pitch. And he can still play
— Kenneth Stoknes (@KStoknes88) July 2, 2021