Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba is a “positive influence” who
“brings everyone together” at the club, says team-mate Juan Mata.
has been speculation about Pogba’s Old Trafford future after he spoke
of finding “a new challenge” in June, while his agent has said the
France international wants to leave.
But pre-season has been going well for the squad, said Spaniard Mata.
“He’s a fantastic midfielder and he’s a very good guy,” the 31-year-old added.
“I think he’s happy.”
in July, United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer also said Pogba has “never
been a problem” and claimed there is an “agenda” against the player.
wants 26-year-old Pogba’s future to include helping the club to start
lifting “big trophies” under Solskjaer, after two seasons without
“Obviously as a team-mate, and as a friend
also, I would like him to stay and to be happy because he is a very good
player for us,” the 31-year-old Spain international, who signed a
two-year contract in June.
“We know we have to do better than last season. This club has won more trophies than any other club in England.”
have not won the Premier League since 2013, the year Sir Alex Ferguson
retired, and their last major trophy was the Europa League in May 2017
under Jose Mourinho – three months after winning the Carabao Cup.
is Mata’s fifth manager at Old Trafford – an amazing statistic given
the club prided itself on stability under Ferguson, who was manager for
26 and a half years.
David Moyes was in charge when the
midfielder joined United from Chelsea for a then club record £37.1m in
January 2014 and he has since served under Ryan Giggs, Louis van Gaal,
Mourinho and Solskjaer.
“The feeling of being a Manchester United
player is so unique,” added Mata, who committed his future to United
despite receiving lucrative offers to move elsewhere.
“I am very happy to stay here. I am dreaming about winning big trophies at this club. That is what the fans deserve.
“We want to win big trophies again. That is what the history of this club deserves.”
United finished sixth in 2018-19, which means they will play in the Europa League this season.
However, Mata decided to stay and fellow Spaniard, goalkeeper David de Gea, is also on the brink of signing a long-term deal.
“David is the best or one of the best goalkeepers in the world, for sure,” Mata said.
is one of my best friends, so I want him to stay. On a professional
level, it will be great for us if he stays because he will give us many
points over the next seasons.”
Midfielder Ander Herrera has moved on, though,
joining Paris St-Germain after his Old Trafford contract expired.
Solskjaer is keen to introduce more youngsters into the first-team squad during 2019-20.
striker Mason Greenwood has been guaranteed a future by the Norwegian
and added to his growing reputation on Saturday when he scored the
winner against Inter Milan in the pre-season International Champions Cup
“Mason has a lot of qualities and the most important one is his mentality,” added Mata.
“He’s hungry to improve and to give his all for the team.
are very happy he’s finding his feet in the first team and gaining
confidence. I am sure he’ll score many goals for this club.”
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