VALENCIA WANT TO SIGN MANCHESTER UNITED STAR JUAN MATA ON A FREE TRANSFER
Spain international midfielder Juan Mata has been linked with a return to Valencia.
The Manchester United star, who has 41 international caps for his country, is out of contract next summer.
Mata, 30, played the full 90 minutes during The Red Devils’ 2-1 opening league win against Leicester City on Friday night, assisting Luke Shaw’s winning strike.
The Sun claim the central midfielder could be set for an emotional return to La Liga side Valencia next year, upon the expiry of his current contract at United.
Expiring in June 2019, the Spaniard has held initial talks over a contract extension at Old Trafford, but without any major developments.
A United source said, “It is well known Juan is wanted by Valencia.
“There is a strong connection between the two.
“His deal is up next summer and it looks likely he’ll leave unless something changes soon.
We know Juan’s motives are not related to money and there’s a very strong emotional attachment to take into account.”
Mata is understood to earn around £130,000-a-week at The Theatre of Dreams.
He scored 46 goals in 174 games overall for Valencia between 2007 and 2011, before his reported £23.5m move to Chelsea.
Mata joined United in January 2014 for a then club-record £37.1m fee, and has netted 39 goals in 187 outings for The Red Devils, winning the UEFA Europa League, the FA Cup, the League Cup and the FA Community Shield.