Man United was coming on the pitch with a two-goal gap against its neighbor Liverpool. Martial gave the lead on penalty to the Red Devils but Coutinho sealed the fate of United with a superb run on the left corner and scored before half-time. Manchester United has been very mediocre under van Gaal and his exit is guaranteed at the end of the season.
Coach MUFC Van Gaal reacts:
“It is very disappointing because we had the chance – that’s the feeling in the dressing room. We created enough chances – [Jesse] Lingard missed with his head, [Juan] Mata from eight metres, [Anthony] Martial also, but the way we conceded that goal, in the last seconds of the first half… If we didn’t concede that goal, it was possible. In the second half, we also had chances – [Marouane] Fellaini with his head, with his foot. But you have to score three goals and that’s not too easy.
You have to give credit to [Philippe] Coutinho. It was a fantastic action. We can also say that we had fantastic actions but you also need a little bit of luck. But when you say that too much as a manager it’s not good. We were 1-0 ahead and we created a lot of chances to be 2-0 already, then we conceded a goal. We didn’t score there so it is then very difficult. The difference in the dressing room was big – Liverpool were relieved, I think, because we played the same way they played in the first half at Anfield.
We tried to do everything. We fought until the end. At half-time, the players were so disappointed but, still, we have given everything. I was very pleased the fans were also seeing that and gave them a big applause after the match.
We have to recover again after this match. The players have given everything – more than everything, I think – but still we have to play against Manchester City, which is a more important game now because it’s about qualification for the Champions League. And they have one [recovery] day more but that was also the case against Arsenal and we beat them, so we have to believe in it. We can do it but it’s our fifth or sixth game in two weeks”.
Coach Liverpool, Klopp comments on advancing to the last 8:
“We knew they would show a reaction and it was much more intensive from Manchester United than in the first game.
We had a little problem in the first half with second balls – they won too many second balls. Usually it’s a 50/50 situation, but in the first half I think it was 70/30 for United. But when we got the ball and used the time we had – because we had a lot more time than we felt in these moments – when we played football and came through it, we had brilliant moments. We created wonderful chances, big chances, but De Gea had another good night in his successful career.
It was a draw but we are through. It was good. It was intensive. We deserved the next round, there’s no doubt about this and that feels really good. It was really hard work again”.