Manchester United wins at Anfield, coach van Gaal targets second place
Liverpool 1-2 Manchester United
Mata on his double at Anfield:
“The game was massive for us because of the position in the table, the rivalry and the history between the two clubs. I think today is the happiest day since I came to the club. I am very happy for the fans, for the team and happy with the performance and the three points.”
Coach van Gaal halis the performance; looks up in table
“The first half was very good because I knew in advance that Liverpool would press us and they did, but we played them off the pitch in the first half,” the boss told reporters. “We scored a fantastic goal and we gave nothing away, so it was a superb first-half.
“Anfield is not a very easy ground for United but now I am manager here, maybe I can change that.” Naturally, he took Liverpool’s threat seriously after they had racked up 14 games unbeaten at home and were undefeated in the league since United’s 3-0 win in December.
“So, I went in the dressing room and I gave all my compliments because I am so happy that I can give my compliments again. Then, in the second half, everything changed because of the red card. Then we are not playing like a team, we are running with the ball, unnecessary losses of the ball, we don’t press the opponent with the ball and that was different in the first half, so that was not so good in the second half.”
“I’m very happy that we’ve won and that we’ve opened up a gap from the teams below us. We can still look up and finish second. It is a significant win because we’re five points ahead of Liverpool now but, if we’d lost, we would have been a point behind them. The win is very important.”
“I’m very pleased for the fans, we’ve beaten Liverpool twice [in the league] now, so I’m very happy. I’m most excited about beating Liverpool today, it’s a very important moment.”