Football

Juan Mata arrival could see a change of style from Moyes

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Manchester United fans are crying out for something. Anything. Are they crying out for Juan Mata, however?

If rumours of a £37 million move for Chelsea's playmaker are true, it may just hint at a change of style for both United and their manager David Moyes.

For United, this would blast away their previous record signing, that of Dimitar Berbatov in September 2008 for a reported £30.75m fee. Moyes too, has never spent that much money in a single signing, although he ran that close this previous summer with the signing of Marouane Fellaini.

However, more intriguing in the Mata interest surrounds where he would play in the team. It beggars belief that Moyes would spend near to £40m on a player and then play him wide left/right when both Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie are back in the starting XI.

Is the potential Mata signing a sign that Moyes has seen the light, and may attempt to ditch his strict 4-4-2, using Valencia and another on the left-hand side? This may become a time to move forward with his tactical approach and to turn United into an attacking force, not a structured force.

Mata will surely not leave Chelsea and join United without assurances of him playing a pivotal role in the team's set-up. This could see United adopting a more fluid 4-2-3-1, like many of their rivals, both in England and in Europe, have adopted over the past couple of years.

United's current wingers just simply aren't up to the mental and tactical, even technical, task to propel the team to league and cup triumphs. Valencia and Ashley Young seemed to be liked by Moyes, but so often highlight their own limitations.

Nani, with all of his talent, still appears to be extremely inconsistent and becoming increasingly unhappy with his constant appearances on the bench. Wilfried Zaha, well, who knows what the issue is there.

The signing of Mata could see United playing more like Chelsea, structured but free to play football at the same time.  If Van Persie was fit and playing, his support would likely be Mata, Rooney and one of Adnan Januzaj or Shinji Kagawa.  This freedom of a three behind the main striker will suit all four players, allowing them space and movement to create play.

This will also allow for less pressure on the midfield.  The two centre-midfielders will no longer be required to provide constant back-up to the attack-minded players, but will instead be allowed to sit and protect the back-line.  

Players in the ilk of Tom Cleverley and Michael Carrick will relish this.  Having two midfielders to sit back and intercept means there is no longer the need for a Roy Keane type of player, a ball-winning midfielder.

Of course, this is all hypothetical and conjuncture, but it appears to be a common belief among Manchester United fans that attractive football is paramount. All managers have their standard structures and like to revert to type, and Moyes was a defender through his career, so his mindset will be based on being cautious in an attacking sense.

But taking the reigns at Manchester United should enable him to embrace the challenge and the heritage of the club, which is renowned for it's counter-attacking wing play and creating his own culture and history, by altering United's attacking play.

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Topics:
Premier League
Manchester United
Chelsea
Juan Mata
Football

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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