TOUR 2014 ARTICLES

04/08/2014 00:01, Report by Nick Coppack in Miami
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Matchday Q&A: Juan Mata

Reds midfielder Juan Mata spoke to MUTV about United's rivalry with Liverpool and the desire for pre-season silverware...

The ICC final is against Liverpool on Monday (kick-off 20:00 local, 00:30 BST). How determined is the team to return to England with silverware?
It would be very nice for us. It’s been a great tour and I think we’ve played very well in some of the games. We’re still trying to adapt to the new system, the new way of playing that the manager has brought with him. It would be very, very nice to win this important tournament. I know it’s only a friendly tournament but it’s important to get off to a good start before the season.

Is this game more significant because it’s Liverpool?
Obviously. It’s a massive rivalry and a massive game for us. Every time we play against Liverpool we know it’s going to be tough because they are a very good team, but it’s important for us we beat them and win this tournament.

You haven’t been a United player for too long, but do you understand the rivalry between the two clubs?
Definitely. Even when I was playing in Spain I knew all about this rivalry. It’s the biggest in England and the rivalry has been there for a long time. They have a good team and they’re playing well so I’m looking forward to it. I think it will be great for the crowd.

Is it possible to play a friendly against Liverpool?
Well, there are no official points up for grabs but any game between Manchester United and Liverpool is a big game. And not just for the players – it’s going to be a big occasion for the fans who are watching the game.

You’ve played in some great stadiums with some great crowds on this tour. There’s another one here in Miami…
Yes, that’s true. I’ve been lucky enough to have played here before with Spain. It’s a great stadium. In every game we’ve played so far in this tournament I’ve been amazed by the stadiums and the support. The number of supporters we have in this country… it’s unbelievable. Hopefully the final will be the same – we’ll have lots of United shirts in the crowd.

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