English Premiership

Mata issues United warning

2015-02-10 12:46
Juan Mata (AFP)

Manchester - Juan Mata has warned his Manchester United team-mates they can't afford another slip-up when they face Burnley at Old Trafford on Wednesday.

United have not lost at home to Burnley since 1962 and nothing less than victory will do in their quest to qualify for the Champions League via a top-four finish in the Premier League.

The Clarets, who are just one place above the relegation zone, will once again be massive underdogs when they take on Louis van Gaal's fourth placed side.

But, after taking just one point from a 1-1 draw at West Ham on Sunday, and that thanks only to a stoppage-time goal from Daley Blind, Spanish midfielder Mata knows United can't afford another lacklustre performance.

"We must win this one because the race for the Champions League spots is now very close," Mata said.

"We have to get the three points at home, we know that, and that's what we are working for. I'm sure we will make it with our people's help."

United slipped a place to fourth following the weekend's results and could be overhauled, temporarily at least, by the north London duo of Tottenham and Arsenal, who both play on Tuesday.

Tottenham face a tough trip to seventh-placed Liverpool but Arsenal will expect to beat bottom club Leicester at home.

That leaves United with no margin for error and defender Phil Jones is determined to make up for what he saw as a missed opportunity to close the gap on second-placed Manchester City by failing to win at West Ham.

"Ultimately, we are disappointed. We needed to win and it was a big game for us. We could have gained some ground," Jones said.

"But it was not to be. We have got another big game on Wednesday night now and we need to win that one.

"The manager said in the dressing room after the game that he couldn't fault our spirit. If we had shown that more in the first half then we might have come away with a victory. We need to address and evaluate this and move on to the Burnley game."

Manchester United will be without suspended Luke Shaw and the injured Michael Carrick for Wednesday's clash against Burnley at Old Trafford.

The match kicks off at 21:45.


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Tuesday, 12 December 2017
Burnley v Stoke City, Turf Moor 21:45
Crystal Palace v Watford, Selhurst Park 22:00
Huddersfield Town v Chelsea, The John Smith's Stadium 22:00
Wednesday, 13 December 2017
Swansea City v Manchester City, Liberty Stadium 21:45
Newcastle United v Everton, St. James' Park 21:45
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Liverpool v West Bromwich Albion, Anfield 22:00
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Chelsea v Southampton, Stamford Bridge 17:00
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