Penalties, a pep talk and Dortmund drama - five memorable James Milner moments

Penalties, a pep talk and Dortmund drama - five memorable James Milner moments

By Glenn Price


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As we pay tribute to James Milner's eight remarkable years with Liverpool ahead of his departure this summer, relive five of the vice-captain's many memorable moments during his time at Anfield…

His assist in the Dortmund comeback

Liverpool's improbable comeback against Borussia Dortmund en route to the Europa League final in 2015-16 was a sign of things to come under Jürgen Klopp.

It was Milner who produced the inviting cross that allowed Dejan Lovren to head home an injury-time winner in front of the Kop as the second leg of the quarter-final neared an end with Dortmund ahead on away goals.

With the Reds awarded a free-kick near the halfway line, the temptation must have been to lump the ball into the box and hope for the best.

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Instead, the vastly experienced Milner opted for a pass down the channel for Daniel Sturridge. He raced to support his teammate, receiving possession again before clipping to the back post.

A cool head delivered inside the chaos that was Anfield that night.

"To be honest, the hardest part was running from the halfway line as I was pretty tired at that point," he said afterwards. "That has always been a strength of mine, creating goals over the years. A lot of people see me as a runner, but I feel creating goals is one of my qualities."

A memorable celebration

Always up for a joke, Milner was the source of laughter with his celebration after wrapping up a 2-0 win at Cardiff City in April 2019.

Having dispatched a penalty, the vice-captain then proceeded to hold his back and hobble with a pretend walking stick.

The reason?

"Virgil has been giving me plenty of stick for being old, so it was just one for him really," he explained.

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A pep talk ahead of Barcelona

The tone for one of Liverpool's greatest ever European nights at Anfield was set by Milner in the morning.

Klopp explained: "He is a big voice in the dressing room and someone all of the players look up to and respect.

"One of the best examples of this is how he was on the morning of the Barcelona game at Anfield when he arrived at Melwood – as soon as he walked through the door that day, he was pushing everyone around him and motivating them and I loved it."

The rest, as they say, is history.

Indeed, Milner played every second of that famous Champions League semi-final second leg at Anfield as the Reds wiped out a three-goal deficit from the first meeting to win 4-0 and secure their place in the Madrid final.

The midfielder would also play a part in the showpiece with Tottenham Hotspur, coming on in the 62nd minute to help the club secure its sixth European Cup.

Cool and calm from the spot v Leicester

There are few players you'd trust more from 12 yards out than Milner.

He converted 19 spot-kicks for the Reds, with one of his most important coming in October 2019 when Liverpool were awarded a stoppage-time penalty at Anfield against Leicester City, with the scoreline locked at 1-1.

'Never in doubt' was the vibe produced from Milner's celebration after he had slotted it in, standing there unfazed as teammates and fans went crazy around him and the charge towards the Premier League title went on.

"To score a penalty, you need somebody who can keep his nerve and Millie is obviously the right guy for that," Klopp stated.

A triple century for the Reds

Milner added himself to a rather exclusive list earlier this season when he became the 61st player to reach the milestone of 300 Liverpool appearances.

The moment arrived in October when he appeared as a substitute in a Champions League win over Rangers at Anfield.

Milner played more games for the Reds than any other club in his storied career.

In April, during a goalless draw at Chelsea, he also moved up to third place on the Premier League's all-time appearances list.

Just Gareth Barry (652) and Ryan Giggs (632) sit above him on that chart, with the 37-year-old currently on 619 top-flight outings.



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