Juan Mata could return to Valencia this summer

Martin Macdonald
Martin Macdonald Updated: 19 May 2021 15:43 BST 2 min read
Juan Mata could return to Valencia this summer

Man Utd attacking midfielder Juan Mata could be set for a return to former club Valencia this summer, according to reports emerging from Spain.

Los Che are currently in a dire situation financially, with the club ravaged by the current coronavirus crisis.

Earlier in the season, they bizarrely gave their players I.O.U letters with a promise of wages rather than actually paying salaries.

That came after there were planned protests outside the Mestalla after Valencia sold key players Dani Parejo and Francis Coquelin to La Liga rivals Villarreal for knockdown prices.

In addition to those two, Ferran Torres was sold to Man City, Rodrigo to Leeds, and Geoffrey Kondogbia to another rival Atletico Madrid.

Spanish outlet La Razon reports that Valencia owner Peter Lim would be interested in bringing Mata as a recruit this summer mainly because he wouldn’t command a transfer fee from Man Utd.

After selling a number of players prior the 2020/21 campaign, Valencia have struggled, and are currently just three points adrift of the relegation zone.

Will Mata actually go?

Mata is still a wonderfully gifted footballer, and at the age of 32 certainly has at least two more years at the highest level should he choose.

The prospect of returning to Valencia is certainly a romantic one as he remains a favourite of the Mestalla faithful, but Valencia are a mess from top to bottom at the moment, from the boardroom to the playing staff.

Under the tenure of Lim, who remains unanimously unpopular, it remains to be seen whether Mata would return under the current circumstances.

After moving to the Premier League back with Chelsea back in 2011, Mata won the Champions League in his first season with the club, as well as the FA Cup.

After falling out of favour under Jose Mourinho at Stamford Bridge, Mata signed for rivals United for a then club record fee of £37m.

With Man Utd he has won one FA Cup and one Europa League title.

Under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, however, he has lost his place in the team and is usually reserved for cup matches.