Manchester United have triggered a clause to extend Juan Mata’s contract by one year, tying the Spaniard to the club until June 2019.
After confirming that the club had extended the midfielder’s contract, Mourinho said:
“Mata is very important. When I arrived one-and-a-half years ago, [they said], ‘Mata is in trouble, in trouble, in trouble’, and now he's getting an extension of one more year. An important player for me; important player for the club; important player for the other players.“
In an exclusive interview with MUTV on Tuesday afternoon, Mata then revealed he is delighted to be staying on and hopes there are
“many more years to come”.
“I still feel very happy and very proud to be part of this club,
“ said the Reds' no.8. ”I think everyone that belongs to Manchester United should feel privileged, and that’s how I feel.
“I’m happy with everyone at the club and, obviously, with the manager and my team-mates. Once you are part of this club, your football career is not the same; it changes, because this is one of the biggest clubs in football history.
“Every day I try to tell myself how lucky and how privileged I am, try to take advantage of every single training session, and try to see how important it is to be a Manchester United player.”
“At eight, ten, twelve years old, I never imagined that I would play for such a club,“ Juan told us on Tuesday. ”I remember the big players – Scholes, Giggs, Beckham, Van Nistelrooy, Ferdinand, Vidic – and it felt so far from where I was playing, but now I’m here it’s a special feeling.
“We have had so many new players during my four years, but now we know each other and understand each other better. We are creating a kind of stability that I believe is needed to build and to create a positive consistency in terms of getting results and getting trophies.”
Next for Mata and his team-mates is a trip to Wembley to face Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday night, as United look for a sixth straight win in all competitions.