Van Gaal took over in the summer to much fanfare but endured a difficult start to life in England, as he gained just 13 points from his opening 10 Premier League games.
The club have since enjoyed something of a renaissance, however, and currently sit third in the Premier League, having lost just three of their 19 matches in 2014, and Van Gaal has now taken the time to thank the Old Trafford faithful for sticking by their team.
"I'm thanking the fans because they were very important in my first six months," he told reporters.
"The club, the fans," Van Gaal replied when asked what had surprised him most since his arrival at the club.
"I have never had the experience that when you lose or draw at home the fans are still applauding for you, showing their belief in you," he added. "Never."
"In Barcelona, the white handkerchiefs. In Bayern, whistles. In Amsterdam, Ajax, they are shouting.
"Here, they are applauding - stand up and applaud. Unbelievable."