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Atletico muscling in on Man Utd’s Mata move is fantastic for Moyes

| 22.01.2014

The Juan Mata to Manchester United transfer has reportedly hit a snag, with news that new La Liga powerhouses Atletico Madrid are planning to hijack the move.

Atletico, who are level on points with Barcelona at the top of La Liga, have thrown their considerable weight into the discussion surrounding Mata’s next club and, according to the Daily Telegraph, have tried to initiate a scenario where David Moyes pulls out of negotiations with Chelsea.

In this instance, Diego Simeone’s side are willing to offer Man United the first option on either the club’s star striker, Diego Costa, or starting left-back Filipe Luis, provided they end their interest in the Chelsea playmaker here and now.

For David Moyes, who hasn’t caught much of a break since replacing Sir Alex Ferguson and is a 3/1 outsider to guide his club into the Champions League places this season, the deal couldn’t be a better chance to solve one of his problems.

Rather than sign Mata, who we’ve already highlighted would be an ill-fitting and desperate solution to United’s troubles, Moyes should snap the hands off the Atletico Madrid executives at the chance to sign Filipe Luis.

While many will roar loudly at the outrage of passing up on 19-goal hitman Costa, buying the Brazilian isn’t a necessity with Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney around.

However, the left back position isn’t one that’s secure in the long-term. Patrice Evra’s contract is up in the summer and the Frenchman has been linked with a move away from the club once it runs it course.

Deputies Fabio and Alex Buttner have failed to oust the ageing former Monaco man from the teamsheet.

Signing Luis, who has four caps for Brazil and has been a prominent figure in Atletico’s climb to the top of the league, would fill a problem position for Moyes with a class performer while also avoiding the awkward reshuffle that would ensue should Mata arrive at Old Trafford.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.