Klopp thinks 'naturally skilled' Milner could stay at Liverpool until he's 38

Jurgen Klopp believes James Milner can play for Liverpool until his late thirties.
Jurgen Klopp believes James Milner can play for Liverpool until his late thirties.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp believes James Milner can play for the club until he is 38.

Klopp praised the veteran Englishman when discussing his side’s bright start to the season after two consecutive victories.

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The former Borussia Dortmund coach believes that Milner’s approach to his fitness will keep him going until he is close to 40, saying,  “With Milly for sure, age is no issue. He is a naturally skilled boy, he’s such a sports guy, he is good at each sport he tries,.

“In life, if you are 32 in any company in the world they would tell you to wait a few years then get a real job! In football it’s like you’re already close to retirement.

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“Our players can play until 36, 37 even 38, and because of his physical abilities I am pretty sure Milly is one of them, if he is lucky with injuries. The end is not to see, and his desire to improve is exceptional.”

Milner had been expected to find first team action difficult to come by under Klopp, but established himself as the first-choice left-back, and has featured across the side. Klopp confirmed, “Since I worked with him, it was always good. He started in different positions, different systems. He was full-back, now he is in midfield, but all our players are influential. That’s how it should be.”

With new signing Fabinho ready for action, and Jordan Henderson, Nathaniel Clyne and Daniel Sturridge all raring to go, it is a difficult period for Klopp to choose his first 11.

Dejan Lovren, though, is not ready to play as he returns from a problem with a stomach muscle: “I don’t think it makes sense to stick to a team only because we won.

“That’s the most important thing but we have quality in the squad and there can be different reasons to change the line-up so that’s possible of course.

“Dejan is coming closer but he’s not really around team training in the moment. He will not be involved in the game, I’m pretty sure no chance for the Leicester game and then, hopefully, after the international break, he will be ready to go.

“That would be nice. That was actually the target from the first day when he was in and we knew about his problems. We thought, ‘Okay, if we can give him that time, then that would be cool.”

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