James Milner explains just why Emre Can is so vital for Liverpool

Paisley Gateway

The Reds vice-captain has hailed the German's tenacity in the middle of the pitch as crucial to the Reds' cause.

Liverpool vice-captain James Milner has told the club's official website that Emre Can is so important to the side because of the energy, tenacity, and ball-winning ability that he brings.

Can returned from the suspension which ruled him out of the 4-1 win over Stoke City on Sunday to again be available for selection for tonight's Europa League quarter-final second leg against Borussia Dortmund at Anfield.

The 22-year-old was initially employed in defence by Brendan Rodgers after his arrival from Bayern Leverkusen two years ago, but has been restored to his preferred position in the centre of midfield under Jurgen Klopp.

Whilst already seen as a big talent, that switch has seen the German international develop into a key player for the Merseyside club, and he has made 45 appearances in all competitions so far this season, as well as making his breakthrough for the German national side at senior level.

Milner, who is acting as stand-in captain during regular skipper Jordan Henderson's injury absence, admitted his joy at the midfielder being able to return to action and hailed the qualities as vitally important for his side.

The 30-year-old told liverpoolfc.com: "He’s had the rest at the weekend, unfortunately missing the game. It was good to get a result without him.

"He has been brilliant this year in midfield, brilliant on the ball and his energy, strength and pace winning the ball back for us is massive. He’ll be a big plus for us coming back.

"Whatever team the manager decides to play, I’m sure the lads will be ready and I’m sure he’ll want to get one over a few of his German teammates as well."

Can is likely to be restored to the starting XI for tonight's rematch against Dortmund as the Reds look to capitalise on an impressive 1-1 draw in Germany by finishing the job at Anfield.

Rarely needing to be substituted because of his seemingly endless energy levels, his return will be a big boost as Klopp looks to steer Liverpool to their first European semi-final in eight years.

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