Cape Town - Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata reportedly agreed to a sizeable pay cut when he penned a new deal with the Red Devils in June.
The Spanish midfielder was out of contract and could have lined his pockets with a free transfer move to Barcelona, who were leading the chase to sign the likeable 31-year-old.
However, the former Chelsea man shocked many last month by deciding to sign a new deal and continue playing at Old Trafford for another two years.
According to United insiders, Mata underlined his love for the club by forsaking a large chunk of his previous £170 000-per-week salary to stay put.
United have made it a rule in recent years to offer less to players already past their 30th birthday - but with bonuses if they are successful on the silverware front.
Mata arrived from Stamford Bridge for £37 million in January 2014 and, despite a lack of regular starting opportunities, his experience is seen as vital by boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer if United are to return to winning ways.