Liverpool and Manchester United will go head-to-head in the Europa League after being drawn against each other in the last 16. Jurgen Klopp’s side will host their north-west rivals in the first leg on March 10, (8.05pm kick-off) before visiting Old Trafford for the second leg a week later, kicking off at 6pm.
Meanwhile, Tottenham’s reward for their 4-1 aggregate win over Fiorentina is a mouthwatering tie against Klopp’s former side Borussia Dortmund, with Spurs travelling to Germany before hosting the second leg at White Hart Lane.Liverpool secured their place in the last 16 with a 1-0 win over Augsburg on Thursday night, while United were forced to come from behind to beat Midtjylland 5-1 and secure a 6-3 aggregate win, with young striker Marcus Rashford scoring a brace on his first-team debut.
The tie will be the first time the two clubs have met in Europe and the first all-English two-legged tie in Europe since United’s Champions League quarter-final win over Chelsea in 2011. And with both clubs struggling to get into the Premier League top four this season, winning the Europa League could yet prove to be the easiest way for either club to qualify for the Champions League.
United hold the upper hand in recent meetings and have completed back-to-back league doubles over their rivals, with Liverpool yet to record a victory against United manager Louis van Gaal. However, Klopp welcomed the draw, saying: “It’s great. We deserve these games. It’s not easy. I told my staff yesterday that I wanted Man United. We lost to them 1-0 here recently and this gives us a chance to make it better.”
Klopp, who is preparing his side for Sunday’s Capital One Cup final against Manchester City, live on Sky Sports 1 on Sunday, admitted there were no comfortable options in the draw.
“There were no easy games in this round so there was no chance for an easy game. Man United – cool,” he added.