The Anfield crowd will need no encouragement in celebrating the contributions of Bobby Firmino and James Milner during Saturday’s final home game of the 2022/23 season, but the manager urges fans to give all four departing players their roses: they all contributed to a Liverpool side who won it all, after all.
Speaking on Bobby Firmino, James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, and Naby Keïta, Jürgen Klopp was firm in his admiration:
This game is super difficult for a number of reasons.
We have spoken with the boys this week that it’s super difficult and super emotional.
We say goodbye from my point of view to four Liverpool legends.
Two of them were here when I arrived. None of the good things would happen without them.
Klopp is sure that fans will show love to those two, but also spent time reminding us of Oxlade-Chamberlain’s cnotributions:
Ox was unlucky in moments with bad injuries at the wrong moments.
When he got injured vs. Roma, he was pretty much irreplaceable at that moment.
You wouldn’t be alone in forgetting this, but Oxlade-Chamberlain, in another universe, could have left a mark on Liverpool with a much firmer hand should he have had a bit more luck with injury. His form at the outset was truly remarkable, and his struggles with fitness since have made his time on Merseyside much more difficult than all of us would have wished for him.
Keïta, too, experienced similar issues:
Naby [had] a few too many injuries but when you look back you see he plays in a lot of important games.
The group as a whole, though, is important to Klopp, with everyone playing a role.
All four of them won all major trophies pretty much. Nothing is forever, that’s how it is.
Klopp knows what we’re thinking, thouugh, and ended his press conference with a reminder for fans:
Millie and Bobby wouldn’t like it if people forget Ox and Naby.
Bobby 100% deserves [his reception], but there is time to give them all the farewell they deserve.
I ask people not to forget Ox and Naby.
We have time if we want until Monday to give them all a farewell...
My English isn’t really good enough to properly express my respect for them [Firmino and Milner], but it’s the same for Ox and Naby.