Juan Mata lays out surprising future plans to Gary Lineker

Manchester United Training Session

A career as a football player is a short-lived one. At best a career can last the best part of 20 years, while some have theirs robbed from them before they've even got going.

As a result, players must always be thinking about what might come next once their playing days are over. After all, the end could be just one bad tackle away.

Most will look to go into coaching, as it would represent an easy transition and allow them to remain in an environment that they've become accustomed to.

However, some will look to enter the media. With so many players now offering the insights of their experience to TV screens across the country, they can almost develop an entirely new career for themselves.

This is often different for players from overseas, though, with many having a degree or a strong formal education under their belts.

The likes of Thierry Henry and Marcel Desailly have been two to buck this trend, with the former a regular alongside Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher on Sky Sports, while the latter is always a welcome guest on the studio panel when the World Cup comes by.

And it would seem that Manchester United playmaker Juan Mata is looking to join them by admitting to Gary Lineker that he would love to present Match of the Day in the future.

An interview with the Spanish international is set to air on the show's magazine programme on Thursday evening, but a sample of the interview is already available now, as you can see in the video below.

When asked by Lineker what he would like to do when he retires, the 28-year-old replied: "To be honest, I'd love to present Match of the Day."

Clearly not expecting him to say that, Lineker responded: "Jees, I'm in trouble.

"I'll be about done by then, by the time you finish playing I'll have had it anyway, so you're welcome to the chair."

Mata had previously admitted that he had considered stepping away from football when he retires, and though he remains unclear on his long term future, he has changed his mind to admit he would like to stay within the game in some capacity.

Linker took over the MOTD hot seat from Des Lynam in 1999, but may be interested in a new career of his own by the time Mata hangs up his boots.

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