Sunday 19 August 2018

mata: I want more goals

Di Maria leads way as Reds find touch

Juan Mata was thrilled by the attacking verve shown by a reinvigorated Manchester United as they hammered QPR 4-0 at Old Trafford.

Angel di Maria was the architect of the Hoops' downfall and it was his free-kick which went straight into the net that got the party started, before strikes from Ander Herrera and Wayne Rooney put the result beyond doubt at the interval.

Mata completed the scoring, courtesy of a superb defence-splitting pass from Di Maria, to wrap up a dream day for Louis Van Gaal - who got his first Premier League win as United boss at the fourth time of asking.

"We tried to score even more and that's what we have to do with the players that we have, we have to play good we have to score a lot of goals," he said.

Di Maria, who made his debut in the goalless draw at Burnley before the international break, put on a glittering display in front of the Old Trafford faithful for the first time.

Mata, translating for the Argentinian midfielder, revealed that the ball for the first goal - which left QPR keeper Rob Green rooted to the spot as he anticipated a header goalwards - was something they had practised in training.

"He's very happy with his first appearance at home and the goal we have been practising during the week - he has done this yesterday in training so it was not a surprise for me," the Spaniard added.

Many expected Mata to make way for United's array of new faces, but he underlined his importance to the Red Devils with a fourth goal.

That was the 26-year-old's second goal of the season and he revealed there is no secret to his prowess so far this year - just a willingness to work hard for the team.

"Well, getting into the box. That's what you have to do and try to help the team to score or assist. That is my second goal of the season and I am happy," he added.

Mata, who only moved to United in January, may still feel like he is still settling in himself but a host of other signings have arrived since then.

While Di Maria made a sparkling home debut, Daley Blind's assured performance in midfield was also important for United and Marcos Rojo slotted in seamlessly at the back - although greater tests will come.

RESISTED

Van Gaal resisted throwing Radamel Falcao in from the start but the Monaco loanee came off the bench to make his bow.

Former Ajax boss Van Gaal was understandably pleased with the result, and the performance of his new arrivals, but he was keen to stress there is much more to come from them.

"We have always to analyse what we have done and of course the result is fantastic, but we can be much better I believe, so it is a very good start," he said.

"Okay, the result is fantastic, but we can get better and we have made a very good new start."

Conversely it was a sorry return to Old Trafford for Rio Ferdinand, who won six titles during a glorious 12-year spell at United.

His manager Harry Redknapp, who handed debuts to new boys Sandro and Niko Kranjcar, lamented the fact his side shipped two goals inside 10 minutes to trail by three goals at the break.

He said: "We had a great chance at 1-0 to score, Matt Phillips could have scored and I thought well we get in at 1-0.

"But suddenly I thought we conceded two poor goals before half-time and then you're 3-0 down."

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