Nemanja Matic is enjoying “some of his best football”, admits Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, with the 31-year-old midfielder considered to be playing his way towards a new contract.
The Serbia international has seen an option taken up in his current deal that will keep him at Old Trafford until the summer of 2021.
With only 12 months to run on that agreement, though, more long-term decisions need to be made.
Matic has been with United since 2017, taking in 111 appearances on the back of being lured away from Chelsea – where he landed two Premier League titles.
He has not always been guaranteed a starting berth under various bosses, but is back in favour with Solskjaer and underlining his value to the collective cause.
Another assured showing was put in during a 3-0 victory over Sheffield United, as his holding qualities allowed the likes of Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba to flourish, and his manager concedes that the offer of fresh terms could be made at some point in the near future.
Solskjaer told United’s official website: “Nemanja is playing some of his best football. He’s had a good pre-season for the first time in many, many years and today he was dictating the game and his experience is vital for us.
“I’m very, very happy that we’re seeing the best of Nemanja and he’ll be important for us and then, of course, it’s down to performances and if Nemanja wants to stay but at the moment he’s in great form.”
Matic, who will turn 32 in August, is enjoying his football at present, with there plenty of competition and quality to be found within United’s midfield ranks.
An experienced performer said: “It is always good to play with top players and we are lucky we have top players in every position. [Against Sheffield United] I played with Bruno and Paul and we did really well.
“It was a good formation and I am sure in the future we can improve a lot together also with Scott [McTominay] and Fred when they play with us.”
While Matic and Co ensured that Solskjaer’s side were rarely threatened against the Blades, it was French forward Anthony Martial who stole the headlines as he grabbed a hat-trick.
“I am especially happy for Anthony scoring his first hat trick. It is very important for him to score goals,” said Matic.
“It is important for every striker for confidence. I am happy that our strikers are in good condition and for me, Anthony was man of the match. He used almost every chance he had to score.
“Let us see in the future what he can do for us but I am happy for him and congratulations to him.”