Mata warns Bruno over his shirt claim
Juan Mata has told Manchester United team-mate Bruno Fernandes that he is going to have to wait if he wants to get hold of his no. 8 shirt.
The popular Spaniard is set to retain the squad number after agreeing a new contract and remaining a valuable part of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's plans.
The decision to extend his stay at Old Trafford into a ninth season prompted Bruno to post a cheeky message on social media in response.
Juan's reply, during an exclusive interview with club media at Carrington, included a warning that the Portugal international may have to wait longer than a year before any switch can even be contemplated.
"At least another year!" laughed the 33-year-old.
“I think he’s happy that I’m staying and I’m happy to be playing with him. We’ve got a great relationship since he came and, of course, he’s been brilliant for us on and off the pitch. He’s also a great guy and an example for others. Unfortunately for him, he will have to be patient!”
Mata is among the players already back at Carrington in preparation for the new season, while Bruno is on a much-deserved holiday after his exertions with his country at Euro 2020.
The Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year enjoys a special friendship with his Iberian colleague and dedicated his magician celebration to his pal after scoring in the Boxing Day game at Leicester City last term.
Midfielder Mata will feature in the club's pre-season friendlies, which begin on Sunday 18 July, against his former team-mate Wayne Rooney's Derby County.
Tickets are currently on sale for the two Old Trafford warm-up fixtures that have been announced, against newly promoted Brentford and Rafa Benitez's Everton.