MANCHESTER UNITED have triggered a one-year contract extension for Juan Mata that will take him through to 2019 at Old Trafford.
And Jose Mourinho insists that the Spaniard, 29, is still a "very important" member of his Red Devils squad.
The Spain playmaker was in the final six months of the deal he signed when he joined the club from Chelsea in 2014 but United had the option of keeping him for an extra season.
There was speculation about Mata's future when Mourinho took charge at United in 2016.
Mourinho was manager at Chelsea when Mata was allowed to leave Stamford Bridge in a £37.1million deal four years ago.
Speculation returned last week when United completed the signing of Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal, with questions arising over where Mata would now fit into the team.
But Mourinho said on Tuesday: "Mata is very important. He is another one, big story when I arrived one and a half years ago – 'Mata in trouble, in trouble, in trouble'.
"Now he's getting an extension of one more year. (He is) an important player for me, an important player for the club, an important player for the other players."
Mourinho has also revealed that United are hopeful of agreeing a new contract with midfielder Marouane Fellaini, who present deal expires in the summer.
With Michael Carrick retiring at the end of the campaign, losing Fellaini would leave a shortage of midfielders.
Mourinho said: "If Marouane leaves, yes we have two gaps there, so let's see what happens.
"In relation to Marouane the good thing is that he would like to stay with us and we would like him to stay with us.
"To sign a contract a person must be happy. Let's see if we can make him happy."
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