The United boss has shown a preference to start Marouane Fellaini in the no.10 role in recent weeks and although he was quite impressive away to Newcastle, he was very poor at home against Arsenal in a game where Mata’s guile and creative passing may have been much better suited.
Mata hasn’t started for Man United in the league for nearly two months now and speaking in his latest column for The Independent, Scholes admitted he was confused by his omission.
He said: “There must be concerns for Juan Mata, who has not started a league game since the Queen’s Park Rangers match on 17 January.
“Given the system Van Gaal seeks to use, I wonder why Mata does not play instead of Fellaini, especially given that United can be reluctant to knock the ball long.”
Mata’s problem looks to be similar to the issues he had at Chelsea under Jose Mourinho because the defensive side to his game is relatively weak which can leave United exposed to counter-attacks through the middle.
Although United have the personnel to cover Mata and allow him to be creatively free with his play, van Gaal’s rigid system doesn’t seem to allow for that.
Just like Ander Herrera earlier this season, fans are keen to see Mata start this weekend and hopefully for the diminutive Spaniard, he can have the same re-introduction to the first-team which Herrera was afforded.