COMING UP BROSES
Golf Monthly|October 2021
James Milner and Adam Lallana speak to Michael Weston about their golf management agency, White Rose
MICHAEL WESTON

Ben Schmidt, one of England’s brightest young golfers, sits down alongside two seasoned pros – footballers James Milner and Adam Lallana. The Premier League stars have just enjoyed a few holes with the highly-rated teenager – a new signing for White Rose Sports Management, which was established by Milner in 2015. Schmidt, as you might imagine, is grinning from ear to ear. What an opportunity – having the support of two professionals who know what competing at the top of their sport is all about.

Milner may be an avid golfer, but the move into golf management is certainly no hobby. The 35-year-old Liverpool midfielder, who’s one of only five players to make over 550 Premier League appearances, isn’t ready to hang up his boots just yet. However, when he does, golf management will be getting his close attention.

“I thought it would be good to use our experiences in sport. We’re lucky we’re in a team and we have everything put on, whereas if you’re a golfer you’re basically on your own and you have to sort that out yourself,” says Milner, who, along with his former teammate Lallana, would have spent much of the summer on the fairways watching White Rose’s players in action had it not been for Covid restrictions.

“Like any sport, you need the right people around you, especially when things aren’t going well. We want to try and provide that for the players and just let them concentrate on their golf. The aim is to help young players come through and achieve their potential.”

Lallana, who joined White Rose in 2020, has caught the golf bug in a big way. With a less congested fixture list at Brighton & Hove Albion, the 33-year-old has plenty of time to work on getting his 18 handicaps down. Receiving the odd tip from Schmidt helps, although as a director he’s happy to be the one giving the advice.

“In chatting to Ben, we have these conversations about not putting too much pressure on yourself at such a young age,” says the former England international, who made his professional debut at Southampton aged 18, before winning both the Premier League and Champions League with Liverpool.

“It’s such a tough sport. You’re competing with so many different people, but if you’ve got the fundamentals and basics and you work hard, I think the rest will kind of take care of itself. It’s about doing all you can to give yourself the best possible chance.”

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