Juan Mata has ended any speculation over his future by signing a new, one-year contract with Manchester United.
Mata was out of contract at the end of the 2020-21 season, although United retained the option to extend his deal by a further year if he agreed. Confirmation has now arrived that the Spanish midfielder will remain at Old Trafford for the 2021-22 campaign.
It will be his ninth season with Man Utd, whom he joined from Chelsea in January 2014. Since then, he has made 273 appearances and scored 51 goals.
His gametime decreased due to a variety of reasons last season, but his experience remains useful for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. Therefore, he will be staying around for another year.
Mata has four medals in his cabinet from his time with United: the FA Cup and Community Shield from 2016 and the EFL Cup and Europa League from 2017.
He scored a penalty during the shootout that decided this year’s final of the latter competition, only for his side to suffer defeat. Now, he will be hoping to get back to lifting trophies in 2022.
Prior to his move to Manchester, he was a World Cup winner with Spain in 2010. One year later, he made his way to the Premier League with Chelsea, before making the switch to United 135 games after.
But the 33-year-old has now pledged his future to the Red Devils as had been expected.
Man Utd, Mata association to continue
A recent report revealed that his association with the club could continue beyond his playing career. Instead of moving into coaching, though, United envisage a future as a board member for Mata.
His wages are believed to have been cut as per the terms of this new deal. The plan could then be for him to take on an executive role whenever he retires.
Respected for his off-the-field work with charities, he has the reputation that United would be looking for in a board member.
But for now, he is set to enjoy at least one more year on the playing field.
The imminent arrival of Jadon Sancho will likely block more of his chances of getting into the starting lineup. However, he is still someone Solskjaer will be able to rely upon.