Juan Mata: Why Man United deserve credit for FA Cup victory

Juan Mata explains why Manchester United deserve credit for back-to-back wins

Juan Mata is adamant that Manchester United deserve credit for Saturday’s FA Cup third-round win.

The Red Devils struggled to impress throughout their clash against Sheffield United and remarkably, Louis van Gaal’s side only had two shots on target during 90 minutes at Old Trafford.

The positive thing of this game is that the team kept fighting until the end and that’s how we got Wayne’s goal

Juan Mata

However, United booked their place in round four thanks to Wayne Rooney’s stoppage-time penalty after Memphis Depay was fouled inside the area.

Former Red Devils midfielder Paul Scholes was unsurprisingly critical of Van Gaal’s players after another unimaginative performance, insisting that it wasn’t a great performance from United.

But Mata, who moved to Old Trafford in a £37.1m deal from Chelsea almost two years ago, defended the Red Devils after winning back-to-back games for the first time since 21 November.

“It’s true that the FA Cup game was not the greatest in the world, but right now, after some complicated weeks we have gone through, I think we have to give credit to each of our victories,” Mata wrote on his blog.

“It’s not easy to find spaces when you play against teams with so many players defending near the box, but we know we must play better and we will keep having good results.

“The positive thing of this game is that the team kept fighting until the end and that’s how we got Wayne’s goal.

“The FA Cup is a special competition and you see surprises every year. We are looking forward to new Cup ties.”

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The Red Devils make the trip to Newcastle United in their next Premier League fixture on Tuesday night before a daunting game against Liverpool at Anfield next Sunday afternoon.

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