Wpid Mata
Spanish International, Mata Fell Out Of Favour At Chelsea

Mata

Mata, 25, could make his United debut as early as Tuesday, when Cardiff City visit Old Trafford in the Premier League.

The Spanish international fell out of favour at Chelsea following Jose Mourinho?s return as manager last year, but he expressed surprise that he had been allowed to leave Stamford Bridge in the middle of the campaign.

?To be honest, I think it?s a bit surprising, but I have to say I am really grateful to Chelsea ? to the owner, to the people working in the club, and to the fans,? Mata told MUTV.

?The last six months were difficult for me. I didn?t play as much as I wanted to. I understand that football is a team sport and I respected that situation.

?But the chance to come to Manchester United was a great chance for me to carry on with my career. They are a massive club.?

Mata also published an open letter on his personal website in which he paid thanks to Chelsea?s fans.

While acknowledging that he had experienced ?some complicated situations from a personal point of view? in recent months, he said that he would ?never forget all the affection given to me by the Chelsea fans?.

?With your support and affection I have grown up as a player and I have had an amazing time both on and off the pitch,? he added.

?I will always feel the gratitude towards you. Always. No words are enough to give back all the things I have received.?

Mata also thanked Mourinho for making him a ?stronger player? and paid tribute to club owner Roman Abramovich ?for trusting me and making an important investment when signing me?.

www.iol.co.za/sport

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