Considering that all of Manchester United’s transfer business has been based around bringing in players, with the most complicated of those deals sown up this week as Paul Pogba completed his move from Juventus, there’s been very little movement from the club regarding potential exits. True, as Sky Sports’ reported in their tweet below, fringe/academy players Paddy McNair and Donald Love are on the cusp of joining Sunderland.
Sky sources: Sunderland agree fee with Man United for Paddy McNair & Donald Love. #SSNHQ
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) August 9, 2016
But both of these players were hardly involved with the first team last season, meaning the important exits are still to come. Marcos Rojo? Bastian Schweinsteiger? Phil Jones? Time will tell.
As it will in the case of Juan Mata. The Spaniard who was bought from Chelsea for £37.1m was expected to be the first casualty and a likely player to be sold when Jose Mourinho took over, but the former Chelsea man had buckled down and worked hard this summer since the players returned for pre-season training, having not been selected for Spain duty at Euro 2016. That hasn’t stopped rumours floating around of a potential exit, with Caught Offside translating an article in Dutch paper De Telegraaf to that effect.
It states that Mata’s future at Old Trafford is very much in doubt due to the presence of the Portuguese, and that Everton would look to use a significant chunk of the £47.5m they received from Manchester City for the sale of John Stones this week to make the deal happen. United fans with relatively long memories will recall that De Telegraaf broke the news that Louis van Gaal would be taking over as manager in 2014, and maintained a steady stream of ‘insider’ information in the subsequent period, which was deemed to be from the mouth of the Dutchman himself. As such, it’s easy to envisage Toffees boss Ronald Koeman casually suggesting that a deal could be struck for a player he worked with at Valencia.
But it still feels unlikely, regardless. Firstly, Mata is clearly minded to stay at United despite Mourinho’s arrival, and with Wayne Rooney’s form behind Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the number 10 role less than impressive so far this summer, the former Chelsea boss might be wise to hang onto Mata in case Rooney is unable to provide on a regular basis. That certainly seems to be a possibility given his presence at the club and the lack of concrete transfer news regarding a departure from Old Trafford.
It’s by no means certain that Mata will remain at United this summer, but given his clear determination to fight for a place in the starting XI, it’s far from certain that he will be sold, as so many people assumed he would be.