Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Juan Mata has impressed him in Manchester United training recently.
Mata has not played since a two-minute cameo appearance against Newcastle in February.
He recently lost his mother and the club gave him as much time as he needed to be with his family.
But Solskjaer told the club’s website Mata has been back in training for over a week now.
“Yeah, definitely,” replied Solskjaer when asked if we’d see Mata back in the side soon.
“He’s come back in and trained with us now for a little bit more than a week and he looks himself again – sharp and he’s ready to come on.”
For tonight’s game against Granada, Solskjaer might make changes to keep his squad fresh given United have a 2-0 first leg advantage.
Mata and Donny have looked good together
That increases the chances of Mata’s return coming tonight and another player who would hope to feature in a rotated side is Donny van de Beek.
There were signs of a burgeoning relationship between the pair in the early part of the season.
Mata said he loves playing with the Dutchman after October’s 3-0 EFL Cup win over Brighton.
Van de Beek set up Mata’s goal that night and Solskjaer said after the game that the pair are ‘on the same wavelength’.
They haven’t started a game together since January’s 1-0 FA Cup win over Watford, but could they get the chance tonight?
Their precise passing could break down a Granada side who were well-organised in the first leg and kill the tie off definitively.
If not tonight, it would be good to see the pair reunited soon. They are among United’s most technical players and their interplay can be a joy to watch.
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