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Mata hails “fantastic” Herrera

Manchester-United-v-ArsenalJuan Mata has hailed Ander Herrera’s first season at Manchester United as “fantastic”, praising the former Athletic Bilbao’s man contribution.

The Spaniard struggled to cement a place in the team earlier in the season but went on to establish himself as a vital cog in Louis Van Gaal’s side, contributing at both ends of the pitch as United clinched a fourth-spot finish.

“He has added his quality to the pitch and his personality to the dressing room,” said Mata, who was himself the first United midfielder to score at least 10 goals in all competitions in a decade.

“He’s a great midfielder. He can tackle and he’s a great offensive player – he can score goals, as he has done this season.

“He’s done a fantastic job for us and hopefully he can improve even more.”

Despite their excellent season, both Mata and Herrera have been left out by Spain’s coach Vicente Del Bosque for this summer’s friendly against Costa Rica and Euro 2016 qualifier against Belarus.