Jose Mourinho doesn't make many mistakes. Tactically he is the best manager in the
Premier League and probably Europe too. No one is better at setting up his team to exploit the weaknesses of the opposition. Even when he seems to lose his temper and do something stupid there is generally an ulterior motive behind it.
By selling Juan Mata to Manchester United however, Mourinho has made a rare and costly error of judgement that will come back to haunt Chelsea for seasons to come.
This mistake is not in selling Juan Mata himself. Given the style of football Mourinho wants his team to play, it's understandable that the diminutive Spaniard is not in his plans. Mourinho demands that his attacking midfielders track-back and do defensive work. It is only if they do this that defensively solid Mourinho is willing to play three attacking midfielders in the same side.
Mata doesn't really do defensive duties however. He isn't the player to sprint back towards his own goal and make a sliding challenge (to be fair though he also doesn't give the ball away). Given his lack of defensive effort it is understandable that Mata is seen as a luxury that Chelsea don't need. Fine then sell him.
It's in Juan Mata's eventual destination that Mourinho made a mistake.
In the short term, Mata's presence at Old Trafford might even help Chelsea. As numerous people have noted that Chelsea have played Manchester United twice whilst title rivals like Manchester City have still got to play the Red Devils again this season
In the long term though, Chelsea have given a serious rival a shot in the arm. This boost might just keep them in the business of challenging for serious silverware and avoiding the Liverpool downward curve.
Not only is a Mata a great addition to the Manchester United starting eleven but he raises squad morale and crucially makes it easier for David Moyes to attract and keep top quality talent.
It's no surprise that Wayne Rooney is suddenly open to the possibility of extending his stay in the north west. With Mata being convinced to sign on to Moyes' project other top players will also be more amenable to the red half of Manchester.
Now that Mata has literally helicoptered into the red half of Manchester you can expect to see other stars be persuaded to do the same. United will be able to build sides that challenge for top honours and Mourinho has played his part in helping Moyes.
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