Man Utd defender Jones: Mourinho has made me feel wanted

May 23, 2017, 11:18

Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata is excited by the prospect of securing a "double bonus" against Ajax in Stockholm on Wednesday - a piece of silverware and a direct route back into the glamour of the Champions League. They've not played since but Bosz turned down the chance of a friendly match at the weekend, insisting training was enough to maintain rhythm for a side who have themselves played 56 games this term. As a result, they could be vulnerable away from the Amsterdam Arena and that's been the case generally as they've won only two of their last eight away in all competitions. Ajax coach Peter Bosz has transformed Ajax in his first season in charge and led the team to the Europa League final. However, only 12 managed to get the job done in 90 minutes and given the way Utd's season has gone, with 18 draws in all competitions to date, it would perhaps be unsurprising for this to be level after the 90.

We are of course talking about Louis van Gaal, who, despite leaving Old Trafford having delivered the FA Cup last season, failed to convince the club's hierarchy that his brand of pass-it-sideways-and-see-what-happens football was moving them in the right direction (ie: forward).

"We've got a fantastic squad and we're all itching to play in the final", he said.

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Win on Wednesday and Mourinho will go into the close season able to promise his transfer targets that next year will be about challenging on the domestic and Champions League fronts. "When we played against Rostov, the trainer was here a couple of weeks, I think".

Despite losing to Lyon, Ajax and their fans were in the dancing spirit after sealing a spot in the Europa League final.

"I've picked up a few injuries which were unfortunate but I till I feel I've had a good season", he added. "They are young but we have a couple of guys who are 24 and have played 300 games, he told ESPN FC, referring to Veltman and club captain Davy Klaassen".

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Having finished in fifth last season, United missed out on the Champions League, having to settle for the Europa League instead.

He admits the build-up to this final has been far more stressful.

Davinson Sanchez, a 20-year-old Colombian who has been one of Ajax's most consistent defenders all season, is the only player in the team with experience of a major final - he won the Copa Libertadores in July 2016 with Atletico Nacional.

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"I know we're a big name but in size - commercial, financial size - we're a small club that can also achieve success".

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