And midfielder Mata, who starred against Bayern Munich in the dramatic victory that landed the European Cup, said: "It's hard to put into words what Fernando has done for me here.
"He was the fundamental reason I came. He told me I would love it here, that I'd enjoy English football and so because of him I came.
"Since I arrived, he has helped me with everything. He gave me his car and let me stay in his house. Everything. I still don't know how I can thank him for all he has done.
"That's why I am very happy when he scores and when he plays at his best because he deserves it."