Lazio are reportedly keen on signing Manchester United attacker Juan Mata this summer. The Serie A club will offer the Spaniard a two-year deal, with an option for a third year.
Mata’s current deal at Old Trafford will expire at the end of the season. There is an option to extend his deal for another 12 months. But it looks like the club will not exercise that option as there has been no agreement between them and Mata’s representatives. As a result, the 32-year-old attacking midfielder will be free to leave the club in the summer.
The Red Devils have a huge summer transfer window ahead. A lot of outgoings are expected from the club this summer to increase their transfer budget. The likes of Andreas Periera, Phil Jones, Jesse Lingard, Diogo Dalot, and Juan Mata are all expected to leave the Theatre of Dreams. Though United will not get any transfer fee for Mata, the club will get rid of his astronomical wages, which currently stands at £135,000-a-week.
United are second in the Premier League table, with five games remaining. They are also a win away from winning the Europa League. If they manage to win the competition, that will be their first silverware since 2017.
Mata facing lack of playing time at United
Juan Mata has barely featured for United this season. The former Chelsea man has started just 4 league games and in total has only played 338 minutes in the league this season. In fact, he has played just two minutes in the league since December.
He has been a fantastic servant for United since joining the club in 2014 for £37 million. He has made 269 appearances for the club at the time of writing, scoring 50 goals and providing 47 assists. But his game time has dried up in recent seasons.
Mata has not played over 20 league games in a single season since the 2017-18 campaign. He is a squad player at the club. But someone with his astronomical wages should be a regular starter for the club.
United should look to offload Mata in the summer and give more game time to younger players like Amad Diallo and Shola Shoretire.
Lazio show interest in Mata:
According to II Tempo, Mata’s representatives have been in contact with Lazio to determine whether the Italian outfit are interested in signing his client. And the club are willing to offer a two-year contract, with an option to extend it for another year.
Boss Simeone Inzaghi wants to bolster his attack ahead of next season. He wants to build an attack with Mata central to it, with the help of chief creator Luis Alberto. Lazio are currently sixth in the Serie A, five points adrift of Champions League place with five games to go.
The Biancocelesti were all set to sign David Silva last summer, as the Spaniard planned to leave Manchester City. But Silva decided against moving to Italy and ultimately joined Real Sociedad.
Lazio wants to avoid another such situation and will look to sign Mata as early as possible. Mata’s wages could be a factor but reports suggest he is willing to take a pay-cut to join the club this summer.