Ander Herrera has revealed that it was the confidence that Louis van Gaal had given him that led to him taking the penalty during Saturday’s win over Liverpool, the Independent report.
The Spaniard was perhaps the surprise man to step up in the 70th minute of their clash with the Reds, and while he admitted that he had never taken a spot-kick in a competitive game, it was his manager’s belief that led to him being the one to put the game beyond doubt (via Independent).
“The manager last season gave me the confidence. He told me I had the quality to take penalties and I have practiced every week,” he explained.
“And, today, when I received the penalty, I thought the number-one taker isn’t on the pitch, I’m the second taker so I’m happy for that,” he added.
With the two sides being practically inseparable before the clash at Old Trafford, the awarding of the penalty was a pivotal moment in the game, as while United were already a goal ahead, a miss from twelve yards may have provided Brendan Rodgers’ men with the boost required to get back into the game.
However, Herrera’s finish suggested that van Gaal’s confidence had rubbed off onto him, and if the Dutchman can instil that same strength in the rest of the side, they could prove to be Manchester City’s biggest rivals in the title race.
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