Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has labelled James Milner’s contract extension as “important to all of us” as he hailed the “benchmark” the midfielder sets at Anfield.
Milner joined Liverpool on a free transfer from Manchester City in 2015 and has been integral to the Reds’ success, lifting the Premier League, Champions League, EFL Cup and FA Cup.
Doubts remained over the future of Milner, whose contract was due to expire in June, but the former England international agreed a one-year extension with Liverpool on Monday.
The 36-year-old appeared 39 times in all competitions for the Reds this season, starting 14 games for his 1,380 minutes of action.
Klopp, speaking to Liverpool’s website, expressed his delight to keep the experienced campaigner on Merseyside for another season.
We are delighted to announce that @JamesMilner has signed a new contract extension with the Reds pic.twitter.com/uaSHd0W4nJ
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) June 6, 2022
“I am delighted by this news. It’s important for us – all of us,” Klopp said.
“A lot is often made of James’ leadership skills and his influence in the dressing room, and of course that’s correct and justified, but nobody should overlook his quality on the pitch, where he continues to perform to a level that meant we simply couldn’t afford to lose him.
“His professionalism is the benchmark for any athlete and it’s why he sets the tone for this team with his ability and attitude.
“We had the longest campaign possible last season and Millie only got stronger and better and more influential as it went on.
“Typically, the discussions we had around extending his contract were centred on: what kind of contribution do we see him making as a player?
“My answer to him was the same I’ll share with supporters: we don’t limit it. We just want the same from him again, because that’s not possible to replace. He can still do it and we still need it.
“So I’m grateful he answered the call and agreed to give us the extra year of his extraordinary career. More to come.”
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