Juan Mata signed for the Red Devils in the January transfer window of the 2013-2014 season. He was signed for a reported fee of £37.1m, which was the then club record fee for Manchester United.
The Spaniard left fellow Premier League club Chelsea after he was benched for a majority of the games in the 2013-2014 season by the current Manchester United manager, José Mourinho.
Mata enjoyed two extremely successful seasons at Chelsea, being named as their player of the season in both.
The fact that it was Mourinho who sold Mata after benching him for a majority of the games has fuelled rumours of the midfielder exiting the club. Since the time José took on the job of Manchester United manager, Mata has been linked with a move out of the club.
Mata had a underwhelming 2015-2016 season, scoring just 10 goals in 54 games. And now, competition for a starting berth has increased at United with the arrival of Mkhitaryan and the emergence of Lingard.
According to Goal, Villarreal are determined to sign Juan Mata as they look to make additions to their attack.
Villareal striker Roberto Soldado will miss several months of the forthcoming season due to a cruciate ligament injury. This period of the transfer window will be very crucial for Villareal, as they look to soften the blow.
They believe that Mata, who has been told by Mourinho that he doesn’t feature in his plans, could be an excellent addition to the squad.
However, Mata’s wages present a problem for the Yellow Submarines. Villarreal will try to convince United into a loan deal for the coming campaign, with a purchase option built into the proposal.
If Mata wishes to join Villareal, he would have to take a pay cut.
But Villareal will not make any official bids for the Spanish play-maker until they have officially qualified for the Champions League. The Europa league semi finalists of last season face AS Monaco in their upcoming Champions League qualifier.