Milner shoulders blame for Liverpool stalemate

Liverpool created few chances in its 0-0 draw with Southampton before a missed penalty from James Milner hit their top-four hopes.

"The penalty was a big chance and I didn't take it. We have to win our remaining two games and see if it's good enough."   -  Getty Images

James Milner shouldered the blame for Liverpool failing to beat Southampton after Fraser Forster saved his second-half penalty to preserve a 0-0 draw at Anfield.

Milner stepped up having scored seven spot-kicks from seven this season, but failed with a Premier League penalty for the first time since November 2009, after Jack Stephens was penalised for handball in the 64th minute.

Penalty prowess deserts Milner as Liverpool falters

The result edged Liverpool up to third, a point ahead of Manchester City, but Pep Guardiola's side has played a game fewer and Manchester United entered its match at Arsenal on Sunday knowing a perfect return from its remaining top-flight fixtures would see them also finish above Jurgen Klopp's men.

"We probably did enough to win the game. The penalty is my fault," Milner told Sky Sports.

"We had to get the three points and the fact we didn't get three points is definitely my fault. I have to live with that."

Forster approached Milner to share a few thoughts before the penalty, but the 31-year-old insisted that act of gamesmanship had no impact and he praised a goalkeeper he rates highly.

"He's a top keeper, he's seen me take a lot of penalties unfortunately," he said of his former Newcastle United and England colleague.

"You have to take that chance and I didn't do it. I have to take responsibility for that

"I've been around long enough to make sure that [pre-penalty chat] doesn't worry me.

"I did what I wanted to do, I think I struck it well. I can't do any more than hold my hands up. "

Milner added: "Southampton are a tough team to break down. We didn't play as well as we would have liked. 

"The penalty was a big chance and I didn't take it. We have to win our remaining two games and see if it's good enough."

Forster revealed some inside information from Southampton's third-choice goalkeeper Stuart Taylor – a team-mate of Milner's at Aston Villa and Manchester City – worked to his advantage.

"I had a little chat before the game with Stuart Taylor and came up with a little plan Fortunately it went my way," he told Sky Sports.

"I was obviously at Newcastle with James. He is a fantastic penalty taker and his record speaks for itself. Luckily it went my way.

"We wanted to be as competitive as we could as a team and make it hard for Liverpool."

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