Man Utd trigger Matic contract extension to keep midfielder at Old Trafford until 2021

Nemanja Matic Manchester UnitedGetty Images

Manchester United have triggered a one-year extension on Nemanja Matic’s contract to keep the midfielder at the club until 2021.

The 31-year-old was due to be out of contract in the summer but the club have exercised their right to extend his stay at Old Trafford.

With Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay having been out injured for a large chunk of the season, the Serbian has stepped up and been key for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side as they have closed the gap on fourth-placed Chelsea.

Solskjaer had confirmed earlier in the month that discussions with Matic had been positive: "We have agreed with him so he will stay, 100 per cent."

The United boss has been heavily criticised for his side's below-par start to the 2019-20 season but with the club now on an 11-game unbeaten run, Matic believes the Red Devils have shown sufficient signs of improvement.

"Of course, every day he (Solskjaer) is improving, for sure. He is getting more experience and he will get better and better," Matic told Sky Sports.

"He is a much better manager than one year ago in my opinion because now he knows all the players, he knows exactly what he needs to do before the games, so I think for his job the experience is very important."

Jose Mourinho signed Matic from Chelsea back in 2017 and he became a regular starter under the Portuguese, keeping his place under Solskjaer after the 47-year-old's appointment.

While he was criticised earlier in the season for some lacklustre performances, the 31-year-old has turned things around and been key for United during their unbeaten run.

The midfielder has missed just one league game since the defeat to Burnley back in January and, aside from being rested in the FA Cup and Europa League, he has been a regular for United.

Solskjaer is looking to bring in a number of new signings in the summer as he continues his rebuild to push United back to being title contenders.

The arrivals of Bruno Fernandes and Odion Ighalo have already boosted the side but the Norwegian is hopeful of another three new faces when the summer transfer window opens.