Spain’s Juan Mata says “revenge” is not on his mind ahead of Manchester United’s trip to Chelsea on Sunday, following last season’s 4-0 drubbing at Stamford Bridge.
The former Chelsea midfielder was introduced as a half-time sub during last season’s away defeat coming on for Marouane Fellaini, but was unable to affect the result as Chelsea sailed to victory with second-half goals from Eden Hazard and N’Golo Kante.
Despite last season’s disappointment, Mata remains upbeat about his side’s chances ahead of this Sunday’s game, shown live on Sky Sports, saying they are not thinking about the previous result and their focus remains on the “present”.
“No, there’s not revenge on my mind. (They are) totally different games, what happened last season, happened last season and now we have to think in the present,” said Mata.
“We have to rest after today and from Thursday we have to start to think about the game. It’s always a difficult game playing Chelsea away but we will try our best.
“It’s always difficult to play against the top teams, but those are the games you want to play, me included.
“There is a lot of pressure around the game but obviously we will try to play our best football and try to win and come back to Manchester with three points. It’ll be tough but we’ll try.
Jose Mourinho’s side have come under pressure after many fans were left unsatisfied with United’s approach against the top teams following defensive performances against Tottenham and Liverpool.
Mata understands the frustrations of the fans and insists he is aware of the “big expectations” at Old Trafford to both win games and perform well.
When asked about criticism aimed at the side’s style of play, Mata said: “That’s what happens when you play for Manchester United, (there’s) big expectations and everyone wants the club to play good and to win.
“And you have to manage that when you play for such a club. We’ll try to win and to have a good game also – that is what is in our minds.