While the conversation could be different after Manchester City visit Anfield later in the day, any question about whether or not James Milner could cope with taking up a spot in the Reds defence has been dispelled by the veteran utility man.
“Probably less to be honest, which hopefully is a good sign,” said the 30-year old when asked if he’s getting a lot of pointers from the coaching staff since switching from a midfield role to one as a fullback. “I think obviously when things are new you’re going to need a bit more guidance and I’ll be asking questions if I’m not sure on things. If you’re doing something wrong, they’ll tell you but if they’re happy with the way things are going then they’ll let you get on with it,” explained Milner. “Obviously there’s odd games where there are special instructions or things you might want to do a bit differently to normal, but other than that there hasn’t been too much so hopefully that means I’m not doing too much wrong.”
If Liverpool want to solidify their spot in second place and keep up the pressure on league leaders Chelsea, putting one over on City on Sunday is massively important. Reds boss Jurgen Klopp might think that the details will be the difference between the two sides, but it’s safe to say those details will likely be in the defence with both teams boasting deadly attackers capable of turning any match against one on its head.
“I think you have to, whether you’re playing in a game for five minutes there or half a season or a full season – you have to think like you’re playing in that position,” continued Milner, reflecting on changing his mindset from playing in a more advanced role to one where he has to play a massive part in stopping goals rather than creating them. “There’s times with the way we play that you find yourself covering someone else’s position and you have to make sure that you’re doing the job properly and fully understand it for that period of time,” added the newly minted fullback. “Obviously I’ve been playing there non-stop in training every day as well so yeah, I’m doing as well as I can and hopefully I can keep improving.”