Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has called on his players to deliver a historic performance by beating Liverpool on Thursday night in the UEFA Europa League.
The Reds are currently 2-0 down against their bitter rivals after a disappointing night at Anfield last week, though manager van Gaal is buoyant ahead of his 150th European game as a manager.
He said: “We always owe the fans a big result because the fans pay to see that, and we have to deliver.”
The Dutchman continued: “It’s a big challenge, we have to believe and the fans can have a big impact.”
United must find the net
With United needing goals to see them through to the next round of the competition the Dutchman is keeping his cards close to his chest, careful to reveal as little as possible about his team selection.
When quizzed in his pre-match press conference on whether teenager Marcus Rashford will continue his run in the team, he said: “A coach needs to be careful with youngsters but all the youngsters are different.”
With Anthony Martial expected to lead the line for United, van Gaal has made it clear his side are focused on scoring goals rather than conceding them, meaning the likes of Rashford may feature alongside the Frenchman as the red devils go in search of goals.
Full focus on Liverpool
Van Gaal was quick to shy away from the limelight himself, as he reaches a personal landmark in European football, and is firmly focused on beating Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool.
The Dutchman explained: “It’s much more important that we beat Liverpool. That is our aim. When we can do that with two goals difference and without conceding, then we have extra-time and, with our fans, we can make it.”
With an important week ahead in United’s season, with Manchester City to come at the weekend, LVG knows that a sensational result at Old Trafford will see his image vastly improved from a fans perspective, and could yet be the turning point on whether the Dutchman leaves or remains at the club next season.