Is James Milner’s injury really a set back?
James Milner was maybe the most promising purchase of last summer. He came in with a great reputation as a British player who had been sitting on the edge of the City first team and had vast experience in the Premier League.
Throughout his time at Manchester City; Milner played as an impact player. He would often be brought onto the field to alter the scoreboard in his teams favor; and he was good at it.
Thus his arrival brought great excitement, and coming in on a free transfer it seemed like a transfer from heaven. He was immediately given the role as vice captain and showed signs of being keen to begin his Liverpool career.
His preseason brought positive signs of good things to come. He scored twice and seemed to control the team well; in a similar style to Steven Gerrard.
However, once the season began faith in Milner started to drain out of the supporters. His work rate has been top notch in all of his matches, however, having only scored two goals and assisting once in his fifteen Premier League matches; he simply has not been good enough.
To be fair Milner does bring great leadership to the squad. He works hard and shows great passion whenever he dons the Liverpool jersey and helps keep the team in order.
However, he does slip up as well. A perfect example of this was his back pass to Raheem Sterling during the match against fellow employers Manchester City.
The leadership and hard work that he brings to the team is beneficial, however, two goals and one assist simply is not good enough.
Liverpool have also got Emre Can, Jordan Henderson and Lucas in their ranks as central midfielders; all of whom provide competition to Milner.
In my opinion Lucas is almost a must. Liverpool have a weak spot and that is when the opposition counter attacks. Thus it is a must to have Lucas in the team. He has been solid this year and has been hugely reliable in defense.
Henderson and Can link up well and both bring something special to the team. Yes Can does have his bad days but most games he performs well. Henderson plays fantastic Steven Gerrard like passes and spreads play well. He creates a lot of attacking opportunities through this. Milner lacks this quality and since Henderson has returned from his injury, the difference is notable.
Milner played well during Henderson’s injury absence, however, with Henderson, Can and Lucas fit, I can not see a place for Milner in the squad.
If he can up his performances, score a few goals and get a few assists then I would think again, but in current form I don’t see a place for him.
Written by @CStephenson_9