The Red Devils midfielder was among the goals in a comfortable victory over Fulham, with Jose Mourinho’s side becoming upwardly mobile once more
Juan Mata is relieved to see Manchester United back to winning ways, with the Spaniard admitting the Red Devils are “not where we want to be”.
Jose Mourinho’s side find themselves playing catch-up after enduring a disjointed opening to their 2018-19 campaign.
A four-game winless run in the Premier League carried them into a meeting with Fulham at Old Trafford, with an untimely wobble leaving them eighth in the table.
United were, however, able to sweep to a comfortable 4-1 success in their most recent outing and are now upwardly mobile once more.
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Mata, who was among the goals against the Cottagers, told MUTV of a welcome return to form: “It is what we needed.
“A good start, good goal, creating a lot of chances and making the fans excited about the game because we know we are not where we want to be.
“Every game we think about giving everything for the fans and we must face every game like we did today.
“It’s not ideal to go behind because then you’re chasing the game and running more than you should.
“So it’s always better if you score early like we did with Ash [Young] then from that we build, we have confidence 3-0 at half time and we need more of that.
“We will try to do it more often from now until the end.”
While helping United to three much-needed points against Fulham, Mata also carried himself to two notable landmarks.
His goal was a 50th in the Premier League for the World Cup winner, while he also now boasts a half-century of assists after teeing up Romelu Lukaku to record a first effort at Old Trafford in 997 minutes.
“Not a bad record, 50 goals and 50 assists,” said Mata.
“When I came to the Premier League I was very excited and motivated and I’m enjoying it so much. I want more goals and assists and more enjoyment on the pitch.”
United are next in action when they face Valencia in their final outing of the Champions League group stage on Wednesday, before then heading to Anfield to take on arch-rivals Liverpool.