That was 2013-14 and the virtuoso was brought in from Chelsea for £37.1 million.
Eight seasons down the line, as Mata, 34, bids adieu after the running out of his contract, the club says ‘gracias’.
Mata’s time at Red Devils clashed with the club’s sharp downfall on the pitch. However, he will always have those goals at Anfield apart from triumphing the FA Cup, League Cup and the Europa League.
One of the pleasant men in football, Mata’s humble work reached India even, through the Common Goal project, he tried to improve lives of the youngsters in Mumbai slums. He also invited some of them to a match at Old Trafford.
He went on to play 285 games, netting 51 goals and vanquishing 4 trophies.
He made his final feature in last fixture of the 2021/22 season, against Crystal Palace on 22nd of May.
Mata’s first trophy at Old Trafford was the 2016 FA Cup under the guidance of Louis van Gaal, whilst he also assisted the club to the Europa League and League Cup under Jose Mourinho the next season.
In a statement vouching his departure, United said, “Thank you for dedicating eight years of your career to United, Juan. Everyone at the club wishes you all the best for the future.”
The legend will depart from the club apace with Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard, who Man Utd declared would also be quitting at the end of their agreements on Wednesday.