Manchester United star dropped by Spain - Arsenal & Chelsea aces stay in squad

Manchester United's Juan Mata has been dropped from the Spain squad - but Arsenal's Santi Cazorla and Chelsea's Diego Costa kept their places.

Manchester United’s Juan Mata has been dropped from the first squad Spain have announced after their dismal World Cup.

The defending champions exited in the group-stage in Brazil and, as a result, Mata has been one of the unfortunate players to be cut from the squad.

Spain play matches against France and Macedonia in the next month, but Mata will not be part of his nation’s side to face them.

It is a reflection on his struggles since his move to United in January that he is no longer in the national squad.

Although La Roja are blessed with an abundance of talent in Mata’s attacking midfield position, he is usually a regular selection and has received 34 caps since 2009.

However, his poor form at club level appears to have forced him out of Vicente Del Bosque’s plans as Spain look to embark on a new era.

At the age of 26, Mata still has time to force his way back into contention, but he will need to drastically improve at Old Trafford if he is to do so.

United have got their season off to a dire start – failing to win in their first three matches – and Mata has been on the periphery of both their Premier League clashes so far.

He was expected to be a key figure under Louis Van Gaal, but there are already questions emerging over his starting place after Angel Di Maria was bought to the club this week.

Whether he will force Mata out of the starting line-up, or be utilised in a different position, remains to be seen, but his arrival certainly brings the former Chelsea man increased competition.

It was better news for two of the other Premier League stars in the Spain set-up, though. Chelsea's Diego Costa and Arsenal's Santi Cazorla both kept their places and will be looking to show they can help the side in the build up to Euro 2016.

Spain’s full squad, which features a number of fresh faces, is shown below.

Goalkeepers: Casillas (Real Madrid), De Gea (Manchester United) and Casilla (Espanyol).

Defenders: Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Carvajal (Real Madrid), Juanfran (atlético), San José (Athletic), Albiol (Nápoles), Bartra (Barcelona), Jordi Alba (Barcelona) and Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

Midfielders: Busquets (Barcelona), Cazorla (Arsenal), Cesc (Chelsea), Iturraspe (Athletic), Pedro (Barcelona), Isco (Real Madrid), Silva (Manchester City), Iniesta (Barcelona) and Koke (Atlético).

Strikers: Raúl García (Atlético), Diego Costa (Chelsea) and Paco Alcácer (Valencia).

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