Signing Steven Taylor Could Be A Mistake For Rangers

Ibrox Front

Rangers’ summer recruitment drive has already begun with Joey Barton, Jordan Rossiter, Matt Crooks and Josh Windass all signing up for the Scottish Championship winners.

Weekend reports have now linked Gers boss Mark Warburton with a move for defender Steven Taylor and it has been suggested that he’ll be in Glasgow today to discuss terms with the Rangers hierarchy.

The centre-back has just left Newcastle United after spending thirteen seasons at his first club. He supposedly turned down a one year extension with the Magpies as it involved a drastic decrease in his basic wage but would’ve seen him increase that with incentive based bonuses.

I think that the player and Newcastle’s fans believe the time is right for the defender to leave Tyneside.

Now I can see why Taylor would interest Rangers.

He was once considered a future England internationalist in the making and represented the English under-21s twenty-nine times. He also showed on many occasions that he was of a good Premier League standard. As always bringing in a player form England’s top flight gets you many plaudits in Scotland and Steven is also being linked with Celtic and a few Turkish sides. He’s also experienced and anyone who watched the Scottish Cup final could tell you that Rangers need another central defender to add healthy competition for places.

But can the Glasgow giants really overlook the negatives that are attached to Steven Taylor? 

The obvious one is that the defender is extremely injury prone, he hasn’t made ten or more league starts since 2012/13. To bring in a player with that kind of injury record is a big gamble, especially when you consider the fact that Warburton likes using a tight squad in terms of numbers.

You cannot doubt Taylor’s ability when he’s 100% fit. He showed that against Man United last season as Newcastle kept a rare cleansheet at Old Trafford. But the issue is that he’s isn’t fully fit often enough. Ask Toon supporters and they’ll tell you he was always a bit of a liability when just back from an injury and lacked match sharpness.

For all that you read about his stellar youth international career, he has never managed to play for the senior side (He has been called up twice but never featured). So it’s just a story of him not reaching his full potential. We can’t keep banging on about his u-21 caps as he’s now thirty.

With other sides interested you’d imagine that he’ll get lucrative offers elsewhere. So that could mean that Rangers need to push the boat out to get him to join the Ibrox side, would that be worthwhile if he is constantly injured (which recent history suggests might happen)?

I am also not convinced that ability wise Steven Taylor offers enough of a difference to the two centre-backs that are already at Rangers. Personally I think they’d be better off targeting an experienced defender who has managed a full season last term, who is no nonsense in his approach and who can dominate in the air.

Rangers fans will obviously back boss Mark Warburton as he hasn’t done much wrong since arriving in Scotland last summer. Only time will tell if he can get his man and if Taylor just needed a change of scenery to change his luck.

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