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Van Gaal explains decision to replace Mata

3860366689Louis Van Gaal has explained he replaced Juan Mata on Saturday because he was not satisfied with the Spaniard’s effort in covering the role he was given.

Mata was largely anonymous against Sheffield United until he was replaced in the 60th minute by Memphis Depay, who went close with a long-range effort before winning a penalty in the third minute of added time.

“We have to play with wingers who make the pitch as big as possible and with Memphis and [Jesse] Lingard I know it’s like that. So we improved by restoring the shape,” Van Gaal said.

“I asked Mata but he was never there.

“Then [Matteo] Darmian has to be the right winger and he tried to do that but that is not his speciality and that’s why I changed.”

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