Six finals in December

Hi everyone,

November was an important month in our calendar and it leaves a bittersweet taste: in the last 30 days we haven’t been defeated, but the last two draws haven’t been good for us. Especially the one on Wednesday against PSV, because we knew it was a game that we had to win. The score was not the one we wanted, which means that winning in Wolfsburg is almost the only valid result for us if we want to get through. It’s not an easy task but we are confident that we can make it to the next stage. The Champions League is a very important competition for us and we want to remain in it.

That game in Germany will be one of the six ‘finals’ we are facing in a busy December. We’re starting to see a Christmas atmosphere in the streets of Manchester and, in this country, that is a synonym of football and more football. The next game -therefore the most important one right now- is on Saturday against West Ham. They have had a good start this season and have won more games away than at home. However, as I said, we don’t like draws and we want to go back to the victories. They have a very good manager and some of their players are very talented, but our aim is to get the three points and we have the whole week to work well on this game.

Things are very tight in the top side of the table. It’s not easy to defeat the teams who are up there, as we could see in Leicester last Saturday. They know the way they want to play and how to make the most of it. We believed we could win but at the end we only got one point, despite we took the initiative most of the time… Congratulations to Jamie Vardy for breaking the record of such a great player as Ruud Van Nistelrooy. Scoring in 11 consecutive games deserves a lot of credit. Sadly his goal made us drop two points, otherwise we would be leading the table now. There’s still a long way to go but if we want to fight for the Premier League title we have to win this kind of games…

In other European leagues, the leaders won their games. I liked PSG’s initiative of changing the advertising on their shirts for a message in memory of the victims in the Paris attacks.

In Spain, Barcelona extended their good moment with a solid win against Real Sociedad. Real Madrid also won despite visiting a complicated stadium like Eibar’s. Later on I watched my former team-mate Aritz Aduriz, who now has, I think, 20 goals in all competitions. That’s spectacular! The worst part of the weekend was Tiago’s injury. He’s a player with a lot of class and he was having a great season with Atlético. I wish him a speedy recovery.

I want to thank you for all your comments about the ‘Draw my life’ video that we uploaded on YouTube last Friday. It’s not easy to summarise your life in 6 minutes but I tried to… In the future I hope to add more happy events.

Have a nice week. I hope we can get a win against West Ham, it would be really important… By the way, last night we had the annual United for Unicef Gala Dinner. As in the previous ones, a lot of money was raised and this time it will go the help children in Bangladesh, who live in very poor conditions. Thank you to all of you who collaborated in this cause…


Juan Mata


PS: Congratulations to Great Britain for winning the Davis Cup. As you know I’m a big fan of tennis and people here have celebrated with enthusiasm this victory, the first one after 79 years for the British team.

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