James Milner sees Leeds transfer as back-up option if Liverpool contract talks collapse


James Milner will target a return to Leeds should his talks over a new contract collapse at Liverpool.

James Milner could be into his final season as a Liverpool player, and reports suggest that he is considering a return to one of his former clubs.

The ex-England international is approaching his 34th birthday and although talks have begun over a possible two-year deal, the Premier League winner could fancy a return to his boyhood club Leeds.

A Liverpool source has told Football Insider that the Reds remain keen to extend his contract at Anfield after a positive four seasons since his move from Manchester City, but they are more interested in a one-year extension.

The report adds that Milner is only willing to stay if he can remain at the club for another two seasons, and Leeds are his back-up option.

The former Aston Villa and Newcastle man left Elland Road in 2004 after joining the club as a pre-teen back in 1996, having made 54 first-team appearances in all competitions.

In his book ‘Ask a Footballer: My Guide to Kicking a Ball About’ Milner was asked about a possible return to his old stomping ground, and he gave mixed response.

“I get asked this all the time,” he said.

“Any time I bump into a Leeds fan – or even my mates back home – it’s always, ‘When are you coming back? When are you coming home?’

“It’s a really hard question to answer because it’s all totally hypothetical.

“There has never been a decision for me to make.

“They’ve never come in for me in the past and they might not do so in future.

“I’m playing for a great team who have just won the Champions League.

“Am I happy at Liverpool? Absolutely. About Leeds, all I can really say is that I still love the club and I still love the fans.

“It’s a regret that I didn’t play for Leeds longer.

“I didn’t want to leave and I felt like I was only really getting started at the club, but it was an unfortunate time for me to be coming through at Leeds.

“They had been in the Champions League semi-final in 2001, but by the time I made my debut 18 months later, a lot of players had been sold and the club was going into a decline.”


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