United playmaker demands Champions League push.
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Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata is adamant that the club must challenge to regain their Champions League place in the upcoming season, report the Mail, as the Red Devils prepare to face Swansea City on the opening day of the Premier League campaign.
Mata is likely to be a key part of manager Louis van Gaal’s plans, with the 3-4-1-2 system that appears to be favoured by the Dutchman seemingly made for Mata to flourish in the role just behind two strikers, which are likely to be Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie.
United didn’t just miss out on the Champions League after a disastrous 2013/14 season, they failed to qualify for European competition altogether, but Mata believes that a return to the top table of continental football is a prerequisite for next season:
“We would all love to win the league but the most important goal – what this club needs – is to play in the Champions League again.”
“I cannot imagine a Champions League two years in a row without United.”
The absence of continental football at Old Trafford may give United a decisive advantage when it comes to the league, however, where the Red Devils will be looking to emulate Liverpool in using their free midweeks to rest and be refreshed for upcoming fixtures.
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