Manchester United latest: Mata starts and transfer updates

Old Trafford Statues

News, views and rumours relating to Manchester United in the past 24 hours.

Juan Mata insists he ‘welcomes the pressure’ of being Manchester United’s club record signing following his £37.1 million transfer from Chelsea officially unveiled on Monday.

"Manchester United is a massive club, with fans all around the world and this will be a big challenge,” he explained.

"But I like the pressure, I think it's good for a footballer to try to improve. People are expecting big things from me and I am looking forward to it.”

Manchester United take on Cardiff City this evening in the Premier League at Old Trafford.

Manchester United: De Gea, Rafael, Smalling, Evans, Evra, Valencia, Jones, Giggs, Young, Mata, Van Persie

Subs: Lindegaard, Cleverley, Fletcher, Januzaj, Kagawa, Hernandez, Rooney

Tonight’s fixture sees the return to Old Trafford of United legend Ole Gunnar Solksjaer for the first time as manager of the opposition. The 40-year-old Norwegian and former Red Devils striker spoke glowingly of his old club.

"The former manager [Sir Alex Ferguson] always installed into us to dream big, and maybe unrealistically, because you never know what might happen,” he said of the retired boss.

"For me to play at Man United was never in my wildest dreams. So now I'm there as a manager. It just comes by coincidence. You just end up there."

In transfer news, United face ‘a race against time’ to sign fullback Luke Shaw as Chelsea emerge to challenge the Premier League champions to sign the Southampton youngster.

Meanwhile, Bayern Munich attacker Toni Kroos is ‘open’ to a move to United, after failing to agree the terms of a new contract with the Bundesliga champions. The German international who has been linked with a move away from the Allianz Arena admitted he would not ‘rule out’ a departure.

Kroos said: "I am unable to rule anything out.”

"I am under contract with Bayern Munich (until June 2015). Actually there are yet no further talks (regarding a new contract) scheduled.”

However, United have ‘played down’ reports Wayne Rooney is set to agree a new ‘bumper’ £300,000 a week contract to stay on at Old Trafford beyond his current deal which expires in less than 18 months.

image: © eirikref

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