Mata confident United will turn corner
Juan Mata insists Manchester United will overcome their current struggles and believes the team's current plight will make him a better player.
United were comprehensively beaten 3-0 by Liverpool at Old Trafford on Sunday, with David Moyes' seventh-placed side now 12 points behind fourth-placed Manchester City, who have two games in hand on them, while Liverpool stretched their advantage over United to 14 points as they moved second and level on points with Arsenal.
However, Mata believes that United's woes will prove a good learning experience. "The storm will pass and the sun will rise again. I have no doubt," Mata wrote in his weekly blog for United's official website.
"Besides, no one said this would be easy, but this is football. It gives you fantastic moments but also very hard times you have to cope with, when you have to show pride and professionalism until the end.
"When all this is gone I'm sure I will be a more mature footballer."
Mata also thanked United's fans for their continued support despite the team's disappointing campaign. He even admitted he felt so low after Sunday's match that he considered not writing his blog entry this week. Teammate Wayne Rooney went further, admitting the result was "one of my worst days in football."
"There are no words to describe your support in the stadium," Mata said. "In games like yesterday it makes me mad not being able to give you what you deserve. I know there is nothing I can say right now, but at least I want you to know how I feel.
"I'll be very honest: on a day like this it's not easy to write. I even thought it would be better to keep quiet and not to write, for I know many fans are really upset now, and so are we."
Mata has struggled to make an impact since United signed him from Chelsea for a club-record 37.1 million pounds in January but he has hinted that it is because he is being played out of position.
"Right now I am playing on the right but to honest I don't see myself as a proper winger," he told BT Sport earlier this month. "I love to play between the lines as a No. 10, come inside, that is where I feel comfortable to play; to keep in touch with the ball because I love to play in possession and with the ball."
The No. 10 role is currently occupied at United by Rooney, with Mata having been largely employed out wide.
Mata thrived in the playmaker position last season at Chelsea, earning his second consecutive player of the year award after moving to Stamford Bridge in 2011.
However, Jose Mourinho preferred Oscar behind the striker and Mata became a peripheral figure before being allowed to leave.