Milner: It was 'big to get over the line' and win first trophy with Liverpool

By Sports Desk May 01, 2020

James Milner has revealed how his previous near misses with Liverpool made winning last season's Champions League final even more special.

The former England midfielder joined the Reds prior to the start of the 2015-16 season but had not secured a trophy during him time with club until the 2-0 European triumph over Tottenham in Madrid.

It was also a first honour on Merseyside for Jurgen Klopp, who had previously lost in finals of the EFL Cup, Europa League and Champions League, as well as finishing a point behind champions Manchester City at the end of the 2018-19 Premier League season. 

Appearing on Sky Sports during the coronavirus lockdown, Milner admitted it was "big to get over the line" and end the wait for silverware, considering Liverpool's storied history of success that is so evident at the club's facilities.

The 34-year-old feels beating Spurs last June was the catalyst to push on again in 2019-20, with Klopp's squad on the brink of securing the league title prior to the stoppage in play.

"I was desperate to get a trophy for this club. You walk into Melwood every day and you see the trophies the club has won every single day," Milner said.

"Obviously getting to the Champions League final the year before, going close in the Premier League, the Europa League final and the League Cup final, having those near misses obviously made it even more special when we got there.

"It's a massive thing playing for a club the size of Liverpool. You see the history and every day you see the players who have played, the players who have pulled on the number seven shirt before me.

"When you are playing at Anfield and you get a taste of that atmosphere and you're getting to finals and not quite getting over the line, to finally get over the line and contribute number six – which we know how massive that is for the club and how important it is, the relationship it has with the European Cup – it's always important to win that first one.

"We managed to get the Super Cup and the World Club Cup this year, and it would be nice to add more. But it was big to get over the line and win that first one together as a team. That gives you all the tools to go on and push on."

Liverpool hold a 25-point lead over nearest rivals City in the table, though it is unclear exactly when any action will resume in the top flight.

The Premier League remains committed to clearing the fixture backlog and finishing the season, with media reports suggesting there is a target to return on the weekend commencing June 13.

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