ReactionJames Milner on 600th PL game, Nunez goals and consistency
James Milner is focused on continuing to contribute to the collective after reaching a huge personal milestone in Saturday's win over Southampton.
Liverpool 3-1 Southampton: Extended highlights
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The Liverpool vice-captain came off the bench at Anfield to register the 600th Premier League appearance of his career.
He became only the fourth player to reach that tally in the era on a day when the Reds signed off for the World Cup break with a 3-1 victory secured by goals from Roberto Firmino and Darwin Nunez (two).
“It’s a lot of games and a long time,” Milner told Liverpoolfc.com post-match.
“Seeing people like Ben Doak come in and how well he played the other day, it’s pleasing to see that and that brings back a few memories as well. I remember being his age doing that as well.
“It’s a long time, you need a lot of luck, I’ve been very fortunate to play with a lot of very good players and managed to learn off those and the managers. It’s great to be still playing and hopefully contributing as much as I can at a club like Liverpool.
“[Gareth Barry’s record of 653] is a long way off. You know me, game by game and I just want to keep working and contributing as much as I can to this football club.”
Read on for a summary of the rest of our chat with the No.7…
On Liverpool’s performance…
I think it was a good performance in places. I think we could have played better at times as well and controlled the game maybe a bit better [in the] second half. Ali probably had a bit more work to do than we would like but he is world-class, so that helps us out a lot. With or without his beard, he’s just as good. So, that’s nice.
On responding to Southampton’s equaliser early in the game…
Yeah, the place was rocking obviously, scored an early goal, a great atmosphere. And then they score pretty quick, a set-piece, which is disappointing [and] something we can work on. Then we have to get going again and credit to the boys, it’s not easy when you’ve been pegged back and maybe things aren’t going your way, to wrestle it back and get the goals we did with some really good goals in there.
On the combination between Nunez and Andy Robertson on the left flank…
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They’re getting that understanding and it’s great that Darwin is banging those goals in. He has settled in pretty quick, to be fair. He’s still learning the language but he’s getting it, he has got a great sense of humour and obviously we’ll see more of that I’m sure once his English comes out more. He has got everything so it’s pleasing for him to get the goals. And Robbo, we know how much he loves an assist as well so it’s important that he keeps getting those.
On the prospect of Nunez continuing to add goals for the team…
Just watching him in training and his attributes, his willingness to work for the team, he is obviously great in the air, a big presence, great strike with both feet, he hits it early, wants to score goals. He is a different type of striker to the other guys up there and that’s obviously great for us as a squad to have these players who all have different attributes.
On the positivity of signing off for the World Cup break with a win…
It was massively important to win today with that break, finishing on a high and taking that momentum. Obviously going away, it’s a long time to think about a poor result until the next game, so it’s nice to do that. As soon as we come back the games come thick and fast again, so it’s an important period again. It’s going to be [about] making sure we get the balance right of getting the rest and being ready to come back in. Straight back into it. It’s good to see more of the performances we want to see these last few weeks, a bit more consistency, that’s important.