By Alex Stevens
Juan Mata has been dropped by Manchester United for the first time this season in a Premier League match.
The Spaniard has been named on the substitute’s bench by Louis van Gaal for Tuesday night’s clash against Newcastle at St James’ Park.
Mata has started all of United’s previous 20 Premier League matches this season, the only ever-present member of the team.
But he is one of three changes from the starting X1 that beat Sheffield United 1-0 in the FA Cup on Saturday, with Cameron Borthwick-Jackson and the injured Bastian Schweinsteiger also dropping out. The trio are replaced by Ashley Young, Jesse Lingard and fit-again Morgan Schneirderlin.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) January 12, 2016
Mata is United’s second leading scorer in the league this season with four goals, one less than the five strikes by top placed Anthony Martial.
Team: De Gea; Young, Smalling, Blind, Darmian; Schneiderlin, Fellaini; Lingard, Herrera, Martial; Rooney. Subs: Romero, Borthwick-Jackson, McNair, Weir, Mata, Pereira, Depay.