Juan Mata: 'Jose Mourinho snub made me better'

Juan Mata believes that falling out of favour at Chelsea under Jose Mourinho made him a stronger player.

Manchester United's record signing Juan Mata has claimed that his exile at Chelsea under Jose Mourinho made him a better player.

The Spaniard sealed a £37.1m move to Old Trafford on Saturday evening having fallen out of favour towards the end of his two-and-a-half-year stay at Stamford Bridge.

The 25-year-old had started just 11 Premier League fixtures for the West Londoners this term, but Mata insists he holds no resentment toward the Portuguese manager, whom he thanked for strengthening him on and off the field.

In an open letter written on his personal website, Mata wrote: "Thanks to every manager I have had the pleasure to work with during my time here.

"They have all been a big help for my progression as a player. I have always respected their decisions, whatever they were; they made me more mature and a stronger person.

"[Thank you] to Jose, for making me a stronger player, because in difficult moments, I have learnt to remain positive and to keep working hard."

Mata could make his United debut in the visit of Cardiff City on Tuesday night.

Juan Mata of Chelsea in action during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Cardiff City at Stamford Bridge on October 19, 2013
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
3Liverpool23138254282647
4Chelsea23145441162547
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal23116641301139
7Burnley239771920-134
8Leicester CityLeicester238783432231
9Everton2376102538-1327
10Watford2375113342-926
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2367102941-1225
12Crystal Palace2367102133-1225
13Bournemouth2366112435-1124
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2366111939-2024
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2365122131-1023
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2358101729-1223
17Southampton2349102334-1121
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom23310101830-1219
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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