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Juan Mata celebrates after scoring against Newcastle

Mata: It was a victory for pride

Juan Mata dedicated Saturday's thrilling comeback victory over Newcastle United to the Manchester United fans as the Reds came from two goals down to beat the Magpies.

The Spaniard, who came on as a first-half substitute, was the catalyst for Jose Mourinho's men to find a route to victory, as he curled in a delightful free-kick with 20 minutes left.

Speaking to MUTV after the game, Juan discussed a number of topics, including how he had been practising set-pieces in the week, the need to turn United's home form around and the importance of the Reds faithful...

DEFEAT WAS NOT AN OPTION
“It was special. We were losing 2-0, they created even more chances to score more goals and confidence levels were low. We needed to change something and when you have nothing to lose you just throw it and you push even more. We couldn't afford another defeat, especially for the fans. I think they saw today [Saturday] that we tried everything and we came back and from the mental point of view it was a very important three points.”

 
Juan Mata.
Mata scored his second goal of the campaign after also netting against Derby in the Carabao Cup.

TARGET PRACTICE
“We needed something and yesterday [Friday] I was practising free kicks in the training ground. I scored I think three in a row and I left, so I said, I think I have the touch and today exactly it proved.

FIRST-HALF SUBSTITUTION
”Normally it happens if a teammate is injured, but today we needed something. We needed to try to be more intense, to create a bit more and that's what we did. First half was difficult, but after the half-time rest we came back with everything and definitely that first half helped.

THE FANS PUSHED US ALL THE WAY
“Definitely, they pushed us, they helped us, to go more, to try more, to give this 50 minutes more and I'm very happy for them. I'm very happy for the team, for us, but especially for the fans. They don't deserve everything that is going on, so they deserve to see a team like today.”

A VICTORY OF PRIDE
We felt that if we scored it was not impossible, especially at Old Trafford. If you score once you can score a few goals in some minutes; I've seen Manchester United doing that a lot of times over the years and today we did it. Even though it felt very difficult we did it. We created more chances to score more goals and that's a very positive sign. I will say that today the victory is a pride victory. I felt that on the pitch, I did not want to feel another sadness feeling, another disappointment feeling.”

 

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