ESPN FC: Massive rebuild around Mata
Wayne Rooney believes it will take time for Juan Mata to gel with his new teammates at Manchester United but says he is excited by the addition of the World Cup winner.
• Okwonga: Moyes must avoid turning Mata into Kagawa
Mata, 25, became United’s 37.1 million pound club-record signing when he joined from Chelsea during the January transfer window.
The Spain international has made four appearances for his new club, recording three assists, but has been played on the right and then the left in the three games Rooney, 28, has also started.
And Rooney, who is yet to score since returning from injury, admits United are still getting used to playing with Mata, while the Spain international needs time himself to adapt to his new surroundings.
He told United’s official website: “It’s exciting. Juan has come in and it’s another world-class player to have in the squad. It’ll take time -- it can always take a little bit of time for every player to gel and to bond but we really hope we can all start scoring goals and help the team be successful.”
United manager David Moyes is facing questions as to how he plans to fit Mata, Rooney and Robin van Persie into the same team.
The trio have started the Red Devils’ last three games but the Premier League champions have not won any of them.
Rooney, though, is hopeful that Wednesday’s 0-0 draw at Arsenal can prove to be the springboard to better results.
He added: “We’ve got a lot of massive games in the Champions League and the league. We’re all looking forward to them.
“I thought we did alright [on Wednesday]. It was a decent point. Arsenal are obviously a good team but we defended really well and maybe could have nicked it with the couple of chances we had.
“Coming to Arsenal any time and getting a point is always a good result. You have to take confidence from it. We’ve been stop-start for most of the season, but we hope we can build on this.
“We have a bit of a break before our next game now and hopefully we can prepare well and kick on for the big matches coming up.”