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Neil Taylor gives his insight into life as a free agent before signing for Middlesbrough

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Neil Taylor has had a great career in the Championship, the Premier League and at international level but after a difficult couple of seasons largely out of favour at Aston Villa, the 32-year-old found himself without a club before signing for Middlesbrough in mid November.

Taylor made his Boro debut in their 1-0 win over Bournemouth last weekend, completing the match in a left wing back role which demonstrates the level of fitness he has been able to maintain despite not seeing regular game time.

The Welshman is set to be in competition with Marc Bola and potentially a January addition for that role in the months ahead, Taylor explained he how stayed positive through a difficult summer when he spoke to TeessideLive.

He said: “For sure it was different. But I was alright and the mentality was always that something would come up.

“In football, it doesn’t matter what age you are, it’s about taking your chances when you get in the door and that’s what you have to do and what ultimately dictates how successful you are, and how long your contracts are, etc.

“I got a few offers from abroad which might have been appealing but the pandemic made it difficult.”

The win over Bournemouth was Taylor’s 250th appearance in the top two tiers of English football and at 32 he still has a lot to contribute in the EFL and for Boro this campaign.

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It must be extremely challenging in the uncertain climate that the pandemic has created to keep the faith and carry on being so dedicated when unattached. A theme of the summer transfer window was clubs opting to sign younger players and promote from within rather than recruiting players with more reliable CVs for the level.

That could have played into why Taylor did not find a club in the summer but it is a credit to the 43-time Wales international that he was able to bide his time and come in to make a positive impact on his Boro debut. Chris Wilder’s men are quietly one of the form sides in the division and, though Wilder will not explicitly say it, confidence will be growing week on week that they can earn promotion to the Premier League this season.


Passionate Football League obsessive and long-suffering Charlton Athletic supporter.

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Article title: Neil Taylor gives his insight into life as a free agent before signing for Middlesbrough

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