As featured on NewsNow: Football news

Man Utd veteran Juan Mata: Van Gaal was a scary man!

Juan Mata admits he was originally scared by former Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal.

The legendary Dutch manager spent two years at Old Trafford, winning one FA Cup during that time.

"I arrive in the room and it was him, Ryan Giggs and a bottle of Rioja, red wine, with three glasses," the Spanish playmaker told United's official podcast.

"He was like: 'Do you want a drink?' and I was: 'No, no, I'm fine'. He had a drink and said: 'Tell me who you are'. I mean my name is Juan, I am 26, I play football. 'No, no. Tell me who you are as a man. Do you have family? What do you find important in life?

"From that moment, he can look scary face to face and sometimes goes close to you but, after that, he was a very warm and genuine man. He was more than a football manager with tactics, he is a great human being and I learned a lot from him."

"He was scary. I tell you. He was a very nice man; a very, very nice man; very genuine and very sensible. You wouldn't expect that but he was very sensible."

About the author

Freddie Taylor

Have your say
×

Subscribe and go ad-free

For only $10 a year

  1. Go Ad-Free
  2. Faster site experience
  3. Support great writing
  4. Subscribe now
Launch Offer: 2 months free
×

Subscribe and go ad-free

For only $10 a year

Subscribe now
Launch Offer: 2 months free