Juan Mata has stated that the lack of Champions League football will stand the Old Trafford club in good stead domestically.
It has been a disastrous campaign for the Old Trafford side, with David Moyes relinquishing his job as a result.
However, club record signing Juan Mata has revealed that he feels next season will be a lot better.
The former Chelsea man used Liverpool’s lack of European football this season as an example of why United could get back into the title reckoning next term.
“Of course, I would rather be playing in the Champions League, but if we take Liverpool as the example — you have a team who have fought all the way to the finish without having played in the Champions League.”
Mata went on to explain his admiration for Ryan Giggs and revealed that the Welshman was his idol when growing up.
“I told him when I arrived that he had been my hero growing up,” Mata said of Giggs.
“And he said to me, “I’m really happy you’re here. But I’m a bit sad too because now I’ve only got the second best left foot at the club.”
“I told him that was impossible. He was the player I watched most closely as a kid. I loved the way he controlled the ball and the touch he had.
“He was a pure winger, left-footed, right out on the touchline. He was fast, unplayable in a one-on-one situation, and he scored goals. Now destiny has made him my team-mate and my manager.”
Mata is good friends with compatriot David De Gea, who has imposed himself this term at Old Trafford.
The ex-Chelsea man has stated that there are comparisons between the goalkeeper and Lionel Messi.
“He has huge faith in himself, which is a really important virtue,” Mata said.
“He doesn’t let anything affect him. He knows if he has made a mistake but it never sinks him. He uses it to make sure that he doesn’t make the same mistake next time. He’s very calm.
“I’ve spoken to friends about this and they say about Leo Messi: “It’s as if he doesn’t care about anything.”
“He scores goals and acts as if it’s normal. But maybe that’s a good thing. There’s so much pressure and maybe, if you tell yourself that you have to be brilliant all the time, when you make a mistake you collapse.
“Maybe you have to treat it all a bit more ‘normally’. I think that’s a quality great players have.”
Mata started slowly at United but has started to show improved form in recent weeks and months.
Accommodating the Spaniard, Wayne Rooney and Adnan Januzaj is the United forward line will be a major task for the next manager at Old Trafford.