Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Taylor's Moving Stateside; FORMER TOON STAR READY TO START A NEW CHAPTER

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Taylor's Moving Stateside; FORMER TOON STAR READY TO START A NEW CHAPTER

Article excerpt

Byline: LEE RYDER Chief sports writer lee.ryder@trinitymirror.com @lee_ryder

STEVEN Taylor has revealed he is experiencing the same excitement he did as a teenager with Newcastle after signing for MLS side Portland Timbers.

The Whitley Bay lad checked out as United's longest-serving player back in May after being with the first team for 12 years.

Having played for top managers like Sir Bobby Robson, Chris Hughton and Rafa Benitez and tasting promotion, relegation and Europe in his time as a player, Taylor has seen it all on Tyneside. But now he admits he is ready for a new challenge and can't wait to play in the same league as the likes of Andrea Pirlo, Frank Lampard and David Villa.

Speaking from the US after completing his move, Taylor told the Chronicle: "The excitement I've got is like when I left school at 16 to play professional it's like a new lease of life.

"Everyone at Portland Timbers is making me very welcome I just want to get playing again. My main goal is to win stuff and enjoy my football playing week-in, weekout, there is no better feeling than that."

Taylor came close to signing for one of the big clubs in Turkey but has instead opted to head to the States and play in a league that is attracting some of the biggest names in world football.

Taylor was an interested spectator in the stands for Portland's game against LA on Sunday. He reflected: "Hearing the singer belt out the US national anthem made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up.

"The fans sing all game I understand why in MLS everyone talks about the Portland Timbers fans. I think you have to experience it for yourself."

But Taylor knows he isn't in the US for a holiday. The calibre of players signing for MLS clubs are getting better by the season - and Taylor said: "Every week for me will be tough as I will be against top strikers. The clubs over here spend a lot of there budget on a striker and it's very rare you will find a club that gets a defender. …

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