Liverpool vs Borussia Dortmund is a mouth-watering tie for many reasons.
Two decent sides, Jurgen Klopp returning to his former club, both sets of fans singing ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ and, now, Henrikh Mkhitaryan has made things even more interesting by seemingly criticising his former manager.
Klopp signed Mkhitaryan for Dortmund in July 2013 for a club record £23.6 million with the midfielder rejecting a chance to join Liverpool.
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He spent two seasons with Klopp at the Westfalenstadion, scoring 17 goals in 87 appearances but has appeared to hit new heights this season under current manager Thomas Tuchel.
At the end of the 2014/15 campaign, Klopp left Dortmund to take a sabbatical break from management being replaced by Tuchel.
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Mkhitaryan has gone on to score 20 goals in 42 matches this season, leaving Dortmund and Tuchel with an outside chance of winning the Bundesliga as they trail Bayern Munich by five points.
Mkhitaryan has revealed what it was like to play under Klopp during his two seasons at the club.
"With Klopp, he was a football madman: pressure and counter-attack,” he told Gazette dello Sport, per the Liverpool Echo.
However, the former Shakhtar Donetsk player had admitted that Tuchel has come in and improved the squad dramatically.
“Instead, (Thomas) Tuchel (Dortmund’s coach) has changed our lives. Now we command the game and I have more freedom to attack. Thanks to him I now make myself more useful,” he added.
Before Mkhitaryan arrived at Dortmund, Klopp had won consecutive league titles in the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons.
He also led his side to the Champions League final in 2013 before being beaten by Bayern Munich at Wembley.
But in the two seasons that Klopp and Mkhitaryan worked together at Dortmund, the side didn’t win any silverware.
They finished second in the 2013/14 season, while in the following season they battled against relegation for the majority of the campaign before eventually finishing seventh.
After being drawn against Klopp’s side, Mkhitaryan believes there will be more emotion attached to the two matches.
“I won’t say that we can or that we can’t win the cup. Let’s go ahead and see if we get to the final,” he added.
“Of course, dealing immediately with Klopp gives more emotion.”
The first-leg of the Europa League last-eight will take place in Germany on April 7 with the replay at Anfield the following week.
It’s sure to be an exciting encounter between the “football madman” and his former club.
Liverpool fans: Do you think your side can progress against Borussia Dortmund in the Europa League? Let us know in the comments box below!
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