It must have been tough for Juan Mata to watch from the side-lines as his Manchester United colleagues ultimately slipped out of the Champions League after a 3-1 defeat away to Bayern Munich.
Having shone the previous weekend against Newcastle United, the Spaniard was exactly the kind of player David Moyes needed against the reigning European champions, especially with Wayne Rooney not at full fitness.
But instead the cup-tied club record signing watched like the rest of the fans, surely elated when Patrice Evra struck the opener only to be rocked by Bayern’s swift and emphatic response.
Writing in his weekly blog, Mata said, “We were fighting for a place in the semi-finals and I believe we were close to making it a couple of times.
“First when Patrice scored that stunning goal…and later on with two more chances that we missed.
“So we have five finals to play in the Premiership and we will try to win all of them to get as many points as possible.”
Those “five finals” are against Everton, Norwich City, Sunderland, Hull City and Southampton, and the Toffees match aside, United should be confident of getting maximum points.
Mata will be hoping to be among the goals once more, before the whole thing starts again next season, almost certainly with a number of new faces in the strip of the outgoing champions.