Gary Neville tips Man United star to become ‘very important’ player
Gary Neville tips Juan Mata to play a key role for Manchester United in the coming weeks and months
Gary Neville believes that Juan Mata could be set to become a “very important” player for Manchester United between now and the end of the season.
The Spanish playmaker has been in good form for the Red Devils in recent weeks and has been attracting praise for his strong performances, especially during the thrilling 3-2 fightback against Crystal Palace in the Premier League last week.
Mata has scored three goals and made four assists in 24 Premier League games for Manchester United so far this season and he will be hoping to hold down a regular spot in the first team between now and the end of the campaign.
The Spaniard helped Manchester United claim a 2-1 victory over Liverpool FC in the Premier League at Old Trafford last weekend and former Red Devils defender Neville feels that Mata could be set to play a more influential role in the coming weeks.
Speaking on his Sky Sports podcast, Neville said: “There are signs in the last two games that there’s a team there and Juan Mata’s become more important to connect the team.
“It looks like you’ve got [Marcus] Rashford, [Anthony] Martial, [Romelu] Lukaku but they haven’t got that glue that just knits it together. Mata looks like he might become a very important player.
“Michael Carrick, [Paul] Pogba has sort of got the ability to connect back to front but Mata certainly has got the composure to hold the ball and allow those players to make their runs so they can get up the pitch and get into a point where they can play one-on-one.
“They need to be one-on-one. You see with Rashford [against Liverpool], [Alexis] Sanchez, Lukaku.”
Manchester United now switch their attentions back towards FA Cup affairs and their crunch quarter-final showdown against Brighton and Hove Albion at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon.
The Red Devils’ win over Liverpool FC last weekend left them in second place in the table.