Juan Mata in talks with Leeds United over free transfer

Negotiations between Juan Mata and Leeds United are ‘on the right track’ but a deal between the two parties is still some way off, 90min understands.

The Spanish playmaker is a free agent following the expiration of his contract with Manchester United at the end of the 2021/22 Premier League season.

Mata has since been linked with a number of destinations, including moves to Major League Soccer and the Turkish Super Lig, with Istanbul giants Galatasaray and Besiktas reportedly interested.

But a source close to the situation has told 90min that Mata is currently in talks with Leeds United, with the club’s director of football Victor Orta in direct contact. Negotiations are understood to be going slowly with no deal yet agreed, but the two parties are on the right track and the veteran midfielder would be happy to make the move to Elland Road.

90min understands Mata’s priority this summer is remaining in a top European league, with England, Italy, Spain, France, and the Netherlands all mentioned as preferable destinations.

Listen now to 90min’s Talking Transfers podcast, with Scott Saunders, Graeme BaileyHarry Symeou Toby Cudworth. On the latest show they discuss Chelsea turning to Antony and Serge Gnabry as Barcelona close in on Raphinha, why Manchester United have still not signed Frenkie de Jong, Manchester City’s pursuit of Marc Cucurella and their interest in Jules Kounde and Pau Torres. Available on all audio platforms and the 90min YouTube channel.

If you can’t see the podcast embed, click here to download the episode in full!

Real Betis, Marseille and a club based in Rome – either Roma or Lazio – have also expressed an interest in signing Mata.

Wherever he lands, Mata will bring immense pedigree. The 34-year-old has enjoyed a club career taking in over 600 professional appearances for the likes of Valencia, Chelsea and Manchester United, winning domestic cup titles in England and Spain as well as the Champions League and Europa League.

At international level, Mata was capped 41 times for Spain between 2009 and 2016, scoring 10 goals and helping La Roja win the 2010 World Cup and 2012 European Championships.

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