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Liverpool’s Milner crushed by Europa League final loss: “It is devastating”

Liverpool v Sevilla - UEFA Europa League Final

BASEL, SWITZERLAND - MAY 18: James Milner of Liverpool shows his frustration during the UEFA Europa League Final match between Liverpool and Sevilla at St. Jakob-Park on May 18, 2016 in Basel, Switzerland. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

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Liverpool’s ride to the UEFA Europa League final in Basel was a thriller, and the brilliant moments didn’t stop on Wednesday.

That is until after halftime.

[ MORE: Match recap | Sturridge scores stunner ]

Daniel Sturridge scored a wonderful first half goal, only for James Milner and his Liverpool teammates to watch Sevilla rally to score three goals in 20 second half minutes.

When all was said and done, Sevilla had its third-straight UEFA Cup and Liverpool had the misery that comes from a load of “What ifs?” -- including a number of uncalled first half handballs in the box.

From the BBC:

“We never started in the second half and it is devastating. We didn’t show near our ability and that is the biggest disappointment.

“We were ready, we made sure we said the right things at half-time. We gave a sloppy goal away and never got back into the game.

“The lineman’s flag went up for the third goal but the referee gave it the other way. It is nothing to do with the referee, it is about us. We didn’t do it on the night that mattered.

Milner was classy not to harp on the officials’ decisions too much, and you have to feel for a man who astutely summed Liverpool’s season up in saying, “We go into two finals and lost both, next time we need to finish the job.”

Follow @NicholasMendola