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The German has had some kind words to say about his opposite number ahead of the mouth-watering first leg of Liverpool and Manchester United's Europa League last-16 tie.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has lauded counterpart Louis van Gaal for overseeing a change in fortunes at Manchester United as the two teams prepare to face off in the Europa League.

Ahead of the first leg of the last-16 tie which has been billed as the "mother of all football games" by Klopp, the German had nothing but kind words for Van Gaal.

Prior to Sunday's surprise loss at West Brom, the Red Devils secured consecutive wins over Shrewsbury, Midtjylland, Arsenal and Watford across three different competitions.

And Klopp has heaped praise on Van Gaal, who has been heavily scrutinised over the course of the campaign, for managing to improve United's form in the face of adversity.

"I think it's pretty close in terms of quality. We are both in a good moment. Okay, United lost the last game but a few weeks ago there was a lot of pressure on Louis van Gaal and United and they handled it really well," said Klopp.

"You thought they had big, big problems but then three games later they are close to the Champions League.

"Van Gaal is one of the most successful managers in the world. I am pleased for him that he could change the situation a little bit.


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"I don't believe in enemies in football. I have absolutely no problem with Van Gaal but last thing I want is for him to win this."

Liverpool themselves head into their clash with United in good spirits, having secured their third straight Premier League win by beating Crystal Palace 2-1 on Sunday.

Christian Benteke's controversial last-gasp penalty at Selhurst Park helped Liverpool move up to seventh and just three points adrift of United and six behind fourth-placed Manchester City.

"We have to be ready but we are in a good moment too. We're looking forward to these games," Klopp added.

"It's big. It's the only thing that counts in this moment. I hope it's not the biggest in my Liverpool career.

"We know what we have to do. The reaction in the last 30 minutes against Palace was really worth watching. We reacted well. Result like that helps.

"This is a completely different situation [to January]. We have more players available. This is the best moment we've had here."

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