Juan Mata Would Enjoy Playing With Zlatan Ibrahimovic At Man Utd
Juan Mata says he would welcome the arrival of Paris St-Germain forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic at Manchester United.
With his contract set to expire in the summer, speculation has continued to mount over Ibrahimovic’s future, with United among a number of clubs reportedly interested in his services.
The 34-year-old has won titles in the Netherlands, Italy, Spain and France, but is yet to test himself in the Premier League.
“I don’t know what he is going to do, whether he is going to stay there or not,” Mata told Sky Sports. “Maybe he will try a new chapter in his long career.
“He is probably the best in Sweden’s history for what he represents. He has played in so many countries and leagues and won trophies everywhere. That speaks about his quality as a player and his importance for PSG and in the national team where he is a captain.
“He is a very good player and I like to play with very good players. Every player would be happy to play with him.”
Mata, who is currently on international duty with Spain as they prepare for friendlies against Italy and Romania, set up the winner on Sunday as United beat Manchester City 1-0 at the Etihad.
The victory enhances United’s hopes of finishing in the top four, moving them just a point behind City with eight games to play.
“We have had difficult moments this season,” says Mata. “We had some periods when we didn’t play as well as we could, but the most important thing is the team and hopefully we can finish this season with a trophy.
“Louis (Van Gaal) is an experienced manager who has won a lot of trophies with former teams. He has his philosophy, his way of understanding football and as players we try to adapt ourselves and do our best on the best in training and in games. Hopefully he can lift a trophy with Manchester United.”
Marcus Rashford continued his impressive start to his United career by scoring the only goal of the game against City.
And Mata was full of praise for the 18-year-old and also Anthony Martial: “They are very good and can become even better. Both are under 20 and have great qualities; fast, have goals in their pockets.
“For us they are very important. In the last few games, Marcus has been scoring and Anthony has been one of our key players through the season. I feel very happy playing alongside them because I can play those passes and they can finish.”
Reflecting on his own form this campaign, Mata said: “I am happy with the number of games I have played. I’ve played almost every game. I have scored some goals and assisted others.
“We have had some difficult moments in the season, it’s true. We had some periods where we didn’t play as well as we could. But overall I am happy because I haven’t been injured.
“The most important thing is the group and the team and hopefully we can finish the season by winning a trophy, which will be great for us.”