Former Manchester United midfielder Luke Chadwick has tipped Juan Mata to have a key role for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side in the season ahead.
The veteran Spaniard has not been a regular starter for the Red Devils for some time now, but remains at Old Trafford nevertheless, with his influence clearly seen as important to Solskjaer.
Chadwick thinks Mata’s character means he’s been kept on as he could still have an important role behind the scenes at United as we get closer to the new season.
“I think Juan Mata knows he’s going to be a squad player,” Chadwick told CaughtOffside.
“He’s coming towards the end of his career, and has been a brilliant servant to United. More than anything he’s a wonderful person and I think Ole seems him as an important influence around that squad, and around the younger players.
“You can see what he brings to the team – it’s so much more than just his output on the pitch. Having said that, when he did get on the pitch last season he performed at a very high level, whether that was in the League Cup or FA Cup or sometimes in the Premier League.
“He has plenty to offer, not necessarily as a regular starter, but it’s more than his ability on the pitch that’s made him a key part of the squad Ole’s put together.”
Some fans may be questioning why Mata is still seen as an important member of the Man Utd squad, but there’ll no doubt be stuff behind the scenes that we don’t know about, and having someone as experienced as the former Chelsea man to provide leadership could be crucial for the team next season.