Juan Mata says he always pictured Chelsea boss Frank Lampard as a future manger

Chelsea travel to Manchester United on Saturday for a Premier League clash and ex-Blues favourite Juan Mata may be lining up for the opposition.

Mata, 32, has been at Old Trafford with Man United for six years, but he’s still a huge favourite at Stamford Bridge for his previous three-year stint in West London.

The left-footed attacking midfielder was part of the famous Blues side that won the Champions League in Munich, where he played alongside current Chelsea boss Frank Lampard.

(Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/GettyImages)

Mata played 135 games across all competitions in his Blues career, scoring 32 goals and supplying 58 assists in return.

The Spaniard has been speaking ahead of the weekend’s fixture and claimed he always pictured his former teammate Lampard becoming a manager in the future, as well as stating he’s doing a “very good” job.

“You could feel from the first day that I arrived to Chelsea’s dressing room that he was a very intelligent man, that he knew a lot about football and he understood the game really well as a player. You could imagine that he would be a very good manager, like he’s showing now,” Mata said, as quoted by Sky Sports.

(Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

Lampard has now entered his second year in charge of Chelsea and the first went successfully with a top-four finish in the Premier League, but the pressure has now been significantly raised on him after a big summer of spending in the transfer window.

They can get a good idea of where they are at this weekend against rivals United, who pipped them to third in the league table last season.

Chelsea will need to be particularly wary of playmaker Mata if he starts, as he’s been in some great form recently with two goals and two assists in just three appearances so far this season in all competitions.

A sports journalist who graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016 and is a Chelsea supporter. Loves anything football or cricket related when it comes to England.