There has been constant speculation over Juan Mata’s future at Stamford Bridge since Jose Mourinho arrived in the summer but the Portuguese manager is not willing to allow the Spaniard to leave despite recent interest in him, according to reports.
Mata was struggling for his fitness at the beginning of the season and was challenged by Mourinho to win his place back as Oscar started the season in the number 10 role and was performing well. Now, every time Mata isn’t in the starting line-up there are many column inches devoted to stories about him leaving.
After the 2-0 Capital One Cup win over Arsenal, a game in which Mata was one of the stars on the night, he gave a modest assessment of his own performance and wouldn’t be drawn into any sort of controversy by the questioning of any interviewer on the night. Mata, as you’d expect, stated that the manager was there to make the difficult decisions and he’s there to do the best for the club. He doesn’t look or sound like an unhappy individual to me and isn’t the type to allow his ego to get the better of him and fall out with someone over rotation.
Apparently Paris Saint-Germain made a late approach in the summer for the player and will try again in January but a ‘source’ quoted in the Daily Express believes they’ll be wasting their time:
“At the moment, Chelsea do not want to sell Mata, even if the offer is right.”
How genuine is the source? That’s anyone’s guess, but in all likelihood the media (and probably interested parties) are more behind the rumours of an exit than the player, club or manager. If true, the face that an offer would be rejected even if the price is the right one would go to show that he’s still a highly valued member of the squad and I think it’s often forgotten that Mata has taken part in a lot of football over the past few years, so may face spells when he’s not as regular as you’d like him to be.
In terms of adapting to a new style I think he’s really shown his willingness to put his head down and work. In the last few games, the Arsenal one especially, he’s shown that he has taken his manager’s words in the right way instead of doing what so many weak mentalities would do and go the easy way out by asking for a transfer. It’s a good sign for Chelsea fans.