Paul Merson: This star deserves more playing time at Man United

Paul Merson feels that Juan Mata deserves more playing time at Manchester United

Paul Merson admits that he cannot understand why Juan Mata is not more of a regular fixture in Louis van Gaal’s Manchester United side this season.

The Spanish playmaker has started all 16 of United’s Premier League games this term but has been substituted in five of the Red Devils’ last 10 top-flight matches.

The former Chelsea star has been in decent form for United so far this season, scoring four goals and making three assists to help Van Gaal’s side up to fourth place in the Premier League table.

Ex-Arsenal star Merson has revealed himself to be a keen admirer of Mata and believes that he should be getting more playing time at the club.

Merson told Sky Sports: “I like him and I don’t see how he doesn’t play every week.”

Merson went on to question Van Gaal’s decision to let midfielder Nani leave the club to join Turkish club Fenerbahce over the summer.

MORE: The latest Man United news and views

MORE: The latest Man United player tweets

He continued: “I think he [Nani] has been a big miss. I know he can be hot or cold but when he did it, he really did. Jesse Lingard scored a great goal to get his manager out of trouble against West Brom but again you’re talking about a young lad against a player who has played for Portugal a million times. If you’re a full-back then you’d definitely rather face Lingard or Adnan Januzaj.”

Manchester United host Norwich City at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon.

Alan Shearer (Photo: BBC Sport / Screengrab)
‘Just too good’: Alan Shearer heaps praise on Chelsea FC trio
Gabriel Martinelli
Mikel Arteta sends fresh message to Arsenal fans about Gabriel Martinelli
Paul Merson
Paul Merson: Harry Kane would be 'perfect' for Man United
Kai Havertz
‘I have to’: Kai Havertz makes vow to Chelsea FC fans
Mason Mount
Thomas Tuchel makes bold prediction about Mason Mount at Chelsea FC
Alan Shearer (Photo: BBC Sport / Screengrab)
‘Just too good’: Alan Shearer heaps praise on Chelsea FC trio
Gabriel Martinelli
Mikel Arteta sends fresh message to Arsenal fans about Gabriel Martinelli
Paul Merson
Paul Merson: Harry Kane would be 'perfect' for Man United
Kai Havertz
‘I have to’: Kai Havertz makes vow to Chelsea FC fans
Mason Mount
Thomas Tuchel makes bold prediction about Mason Mount at Chelsea FC
Top 50 Muslim footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea FC, Liverpool FC and Man United stars feature
Top 50 Muslim footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea FC, Liverpool FC and Man United stars feature