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'It’s not easy': Gary Lineker applauds James Milner for ESL stance

Gary Lineker applauded James Milner for his stance on the ESL after Liverpool drew with Leeds United. The vice-captain was open about his opposition.

Liverpool drew 1-1 with Leeds United at Elland Road on Monday evening. But that was never going to be the main story.

The Reds announced on Sunday evening that they were founding members of the European Super League, after all. It was a massive announcement and one that has dominated football over the past two days.

And, of course, most are against it. A cabal of clubs hope to close up the shop and guarantee themselves enormous amounts of money without earning it – and it’s hard to get behind that.

Someone who definitely isn’t behind it is James Milner. The Liverpool vice-captain openly said he’s against the idea after the game, becoming the first major ‘ESL’ player to do so.

“It’s the same as everyone, there are a lot of questions,” he told Sky Sports. “I can only say my personal opinion – I don’t like it and hopefully, it doesn’t happen.”

That prompted Gary Lineker to applaud Milner on Twitter for taking a stance against the ESL.

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“Well played [Milner] in speaking out against the ESL,” he wrote. “It’s not easy for the players to go against the owners.

“They’ve been placed in an invidious position. I’m sure all the players feel the same. If they stand together with their fans it will always be remembered.”

What RTK has to say

We agree all around. It’s vitally important that people within football stand with the fans on this and no one is more vital to that than the players.

Photo by CLIVE BRUNSKILL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Milner didn’t exactly deliver his words as if they were a big statement – he sounded as if he were telling us something we already knew. But they are, undoubtedly, a statement.

The more players who do this, the better things become. Everyone has got to be together on this or, once again, the money will win.

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