Mata: We must be ready for Hammers rematch

Wednesday 22 September 2021 07:00

Juan Mata says Manchester United have already put Sunday's success behind them and are firmly focused on registering a second win over West Ham United in the space of four days.

Just over 72 hours after our thrilling 2-1 win against David Moyes’ side at the London Stadium in the Premier League, we will meet the Hammers once again, this time in the third round of the Carabao Cup at Old Trafford (KO 19:45 BST). 

David De Gea was the hero deep into stoppage time on Sunday, keeping out Mark Noble’s last-gasp penalty to ensure that Jesse Lingard’s late strike moments beforehand was the decisive goal in the capital. 

The no.1 was mobbed by his team-mates on the pitch after the final whistle as a result, with Mata being one of the players going over to celebrate with his fellow Spaniard and show his appreciation for the save.
De Gea mobbed after final whistle Video

De Gea mobbed after final whistle

See the way David's colleagues paid tribute to his save at the end of the win over West Ham...

Our no.8 shared his delight for his national compatriot when speaking to club media, while insisting that the entire squad have since shifted their attentions to this evening’s meeting and the pursue of another victory.

“It was a great way of winning with that penalty at the end, with that save at the end. I was very, very happy for him [De Gea], he deserved a day like that,” Mata said.

“But we are moving on, we are thinking already about the next game because as you know, we have many games now, so there’s no time for celebrating a lot. It’s time for feeling good but getting ready for the next one.

“They will probably make some changes, so maybe the personnel is a tiny [bit] different but they still have a very competitive squad, we know how difficult it is going to be to beat them but we play at home and hopefully we can have a great game.”
As well as the game coming in a different competition to that of Sunday, the midweek meeting will be played on a different ground with the Reds of course the hosts this time around. 

Juan is looking forward to getting back to the Theatre of Dreams and playing in front of the home support, in what will be our first night under the lights in M16 this season.

“It’s always fantastic to see Old Trafford full, so hopefully it’s going to be full, I know they [the fans] will be supporting us.

“We have been waiting for so long to have them back so it’s great to play in front of them and hopefully we can give them a good game.

“It’s [the support] key for us. Football without fans means nothing and especially our fans, both home and away, they give us so much,” the Spaniard added.

“When we play in front of them, everyone feels one level higher in excitement and everything. So, hopefully we can have a great season for them because they have been waiting for so long to come back and support us.”

How to follow United v West Ham


We meet the Hammers again in midweek, but this time it's at Old Trafford and cup progress is at stake.

Wednesday’s tie is also the first of four games for the Reds across three different competitions prior to the October international break. 

The 33-year-old knows the importance of achieving positive results in those fixtures, starting this midweek, in continuing to lay the foundations for what is hopefully a successful campaign to come. 

“We will try to win every game, now that we have four or five games until the next international break, and we know if you get into a good rhythm of results, it can be key, especially when you get to November and December which is the most important part of the season," Juan said.

“We’ll try to count three points after three points, qualify through the cup and let’s see how we arrive at the next international break.”