'Nice guy' Juan Mata embraces ex-Chelsea teammates after Manchester United draw
The 27-year-old Spaniard feels his team are playing better every game
Ex-Chelsea star Juan Mata showed why he is such a popular figure in Manchester after he greeted and hugged every one of his former teammates at the end of the game on Sunday. Mata once again put in a good performance against his old club but it’s his off-field etiquette that's garnering the appreciation of the fans.
Mata won the Man-of-the-Match award for his clinical display at the Bridge and paid tribute to the Chelsea fans who applauded him off the field. “It was special. I'm always grateful. I spent two and a half great years here and they were amazing for me since the first day. It's always special to play here and I really appreciate it. I'm really grateful”, Mata said in his post-match interview.
The gesture not only shows what a professional he is but also how he’s maintained a good relationship with his former teammates despite leaving in two and a half years ago. Mata spent three years at the London club where he won the Champions league and the Europa league.
He was voted Chelsea’s player of the year in his debut season with the Blues and it’s clear the fans have not forgotten his contribution to the club.
Here is a small collage of Mata embracing his teammates:
Mata believes United are playing better
Mata’s current team Manchester United lost some ground on the race for the Champions League places after they were denied all three points in stoppage time after Diego Costa’s late equalizer. They are currently six points behind their local rivals Manchester City who dropped to fourth after their loss to Leicester City.
“We’re playing a lot better now. The team spirit is good and as a collective group we’re doing well.” he said in an interview on the club’s official website
“When you win and when you play good football, confidence grows. I think we’re showing now that we can play a high level of football and can play attractive, offensive football.That’s what we’re trying to do – that’s what the fans want to see, so we try our best in every game. I think the last three or four games we’ve played really well”, he added.
Louis Van Gaal’s side next face a trip to relegation-threatened Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. Mata will be hoping he and his teammates can get their top four push back on track against Sam Allardyce's men on Saturday.