Juan Mata: Manchester United midfielder pays emotional farewell as he leaves club
Juan Mata has paid an emotional farewell to Manchester United via a heartfelt video message on his official Twitter account.
The former Spain international, 38, has left United after joining the club in January 2014.
“Sometimes reality exceeds dreams,” wrote Mata on Twitter.
In an accompanying video on his social media account, he added: “All good things come to an end. I really feel like an adopted Mancunian.”
Mata, who said he felt “special” and “very loved” during his eight-and-a-half seasons at the club, made 285 appearances and scored 51 goals for United.
He won the Europa League, FA Cup and EFL Cup but, unlike at his former side Chelsea, he failed to win the Champions League. The Premier League crown also evaded him.
Mata, whose contract at Old Trafford expired, joins fellow midfielders Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard out of the exit door as new manager Erik ten Hag begins his rebuild of the club.
Their departures were officially confirmed when United announced their list of retained players on Friday.
“I am truly honoured and proud – and I will always be one of you,” said Mata.
“I am the proudest man in the world for having represented this unique club.
“It is something I would have never of dreamed of when I was little. It felt too distant for a kid in Spain to one day play for one of the best clubs in the history of football.”
Mata signed a one-year contract extension in July last year, but he played just seven times in the Premier League in 2021-22.
“We haven’t experienced the best period in the history of the club, but we did have some amazing memories along the way in the form of trophies and special moments together that will stay forever in my mind,” he added.
“I wish nothing but the best to the club and the new manager – and I really hope this is the era full of great football, trophies and enjoyment for our fans.”