Madrid: Manchester United head coach Louis Van Gaal has expressed his admiration for FC Barcelona's Argentine star Lionel Messi for his humility and talent, while he spoke of his excitement for the July 25 friendly match between the two sides.
In an interview with Manchester United television on Monday, van Gaal commented on Messi's value, reports Efe. "I think he proves it nearly every game, and in spite of his high talent he is modest, and I like that also in him. So I respect him very much."
The Dutchman also talked about the pre-season, as United returned to training on Sunday to prepare for the Tour International Champions Cup against Club America, the San Jose Earthquakes, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain.
Van Gaal said he is excited to face Barcelona, which he lead from 1997-2000 and 2002-2003.
"I have to say that Barcelona (is) still with players that I have coached, so that is nice to see these players, but also a lot of the staff is remaining there," Van Gaal, who also coached Bayern Munich, AZ Alkmaar and Ajax Amsterdam, said.
The Dutch coach also spoke of his joy to see the success of his old players. "I am always pleased that when you are the trainer that gives their debut, that I played then so many times, so many years, for a club, especially Xavi (Hernandez) and Iniesta are examples, but also is Victor Valdes, who is playing with us."