Schweinsteiger was immediately banished from the first-team squad upon Jose Mourinho’s arrival, with the 53-year-old declaring that the German was not part of his plans at Old Trafford.
However, to the surprise of many, the 32-year-old was, for the first time this season, called up to train with the first-team squad earlier this week – much to the delight of Man United fans.
Mata, speaking earlier this week, was full of praise for the German.
“We all are very happy for him that he is training with us,” Mata said.
“I wish the best for him and so does the rest of the team. He will never lose it.”
Some players enter a rapid decline as they enter the latter stages of their career. Michael Owen is an example, Wayne Rooney another. These are players who experienced the zenith of their powers remarkably early before painfully descending into mediocrity.
Schweinsteiger, however, is not one of those players: the German, like many talented midfielders, exudes a sense of timelessness when on the pitch, almost as if their style never has changed and never will change. His prowess on the ball seems second nature, in a similar sense to, say, Michael Carrick, or even Xavi Hernandez.
However, whether United fans will get a chance to see the 32-year-old dictating the midfield ever again remains to be seen.