Manchester United's Juan Mata: I can take Cesc Fabregas' role

Manchester United playmaker Juan Mata says he can play the False 9 role Chelsea target Cesc Fabregas has performed in so well for Spain and Barcelona.

Spain are placing their striking hopes in the increasingly injury prone Diego Costa at the World Cup, unconvinced by the faded talent of Fernando Torres.

At Euro 2012, Vicente del Bosque was so enamoured with Torres that he preferred to play without a striker at all, deploying Cesc Fabregas as a False 9, with great effect.

Now as Spain bid to secure their fourth major tournament success in succession, and prove their dominance is not over, Manchester United's Juan Mata has put his name forward to step into the role if required.

He told The Guardian: "Movement is fundamental, Spain tend to 'arrive' rather than 'be.' And a normal striker tends to 'be'. That's why Cesc Fabregas has played there as a false nine and David Silva has played there.

"I have. Not for Spain, but I played a couple of games there with Unai Emery for Valencia. And if it means playing, I'll play anywhere."

Mata you feel is simply relieved to be in Brazil. At one stage this season it had appeared he would not make the squad, and was left out of friendlies in February, along with Torres.

His strong end to the season to United has been to great effect, scoring six times in his last seven games.

Juan Mata Man Utd 6 1 7 533

That is a strike rate to suggest Mata is not only in-form, but if he 'arrives' in front of goal from whichever position he is playing in, Spain fans should be confident the maestro can find the back of the net.

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