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Juan Mata

Creative midfielder Juan Mata is a World Cup winner and a Champions League winner who has been part of Spain's golden generation.

He first represented Spain's Under-16s side and has played at every international level since with almost unbroken success.

The one major trophy missing from Mata's cabinet is the Olympic Games title, with his only appearance coming at London 2012 when Spain were eliminated in the group stages.

Famed for his flair, free-kicks and fine range of passing, Mata won the Golden Player Award at the 2011 UEFA European Under-21 tournament in Denmark and that helped establish him as a regular member of Spain's multi-talented squad.

Senior team success followed in spectacular style, with Mata scoring in the 4--0 win over Italy as Spain won the UEFA European Championship in 2012.

Mata, who began his club career at Real Madrid Castilla before four seasons with Valencia, was also part of the squad that earned Spain their first World Cup title two years later.

In 2011 joined Chelsea in the English Premier League and won the UEFA Champions League, the Europa League and the FA Cup. He was also twice named the club’s player of the season, but was sold to Manchester United in January 2014.

Mata's father, also Juan, played as a forward in the 1980s and 1990s for Burgos FC.

Best of London 2012

From a spectacular Royal entrance at the Opening Ceremony to Usain Bolt's world record and Mo Farah's double, relive the best of London 2012.
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What's inside...
From a spectacular Royal entrance at the Opening Ceremony to Usain Bolt's world record and Mo Farah's double, relive the best of London 2012.
View Feature

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