James Milner’s pursuit of fitness perfection has been compared to that of Cristiano Ronaldo’s by one of the Liverpool man’s former physios.
The midfield stalwart remains an influential player at Liverpool despite recently turning 36, featuring 18 times this season across all competitions, including four appearances in the Champions League.
Having initially burst onto the scene for Leeds United in the 2002/03 season, Milner has been a consistent part of the Premier League furniture since, playing in every single top-flight campaign following his debut two decades ago.
He is Mr. Dependable in Jurgen Klopp’s side and has been consistently praised for his longevity at the upper bracket of the sport, with former Man City physio Paul Webster now revealing the secrets behind his highly-thorough fitness programme.
“It’s the little things that he does every day that make up a whole package,” Webster told GOAL.
“When I see him play now, it’s like time hasn’t moved on; he’s like he was 10 years ago.
“James is probably a little bit more pedantic in his food and his drink and what he does in his general lifestyle, but that’s not to take anything away from some of the other players that would come in and work just as hard.
“But, originally, James’ overall package is what I noticed.”
Now the oldest member of Klopp’s squad, Milner is still as fit as a butcher’s dog and one of the most athletic players at the club, with Webster even going as far as to compare Milner’s dedication to fitness to that of renowned health-enthusiast Ronaldo.
He continued: “I watched him (Milner) against Chelsea and he was probably one of the fittest on the pitch. He looks young, he looks fit, he’s probably got eight per cent body fat or something ridiculous.
“He’s a bit like Ronaldo. I’ve never worked with Ronaldo, but I know people that have and I get the same impression. It’s all the little things that add up, and they have more little things to add up.
“It’s everything: drinking, James doesn’t touch alcohol; food, he’s meticulous with how much he eats; his timekeeping is perfect; he has goals – he wants to be fitter and stronger as months go by; his general behaviour and his internal discipline.
“It’s no surprise to me whatsoever that he’s still playing, and he’ll roll on for another few years yet.”