Confirmed: Taylor appointed new Wellington Phoenix captain

Wellington Phoenix have confirmed that ex-Premier League defender Steven Taylor will be the club's captain for the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 Season.

Phoenix boss Ufuk Talay hinted at the prospect after the club's 7-0 pre-season friendly win over Wairarapa United in Masterton last week.

SIGNING NEWS: All of Wellington Phoenix's Ins & Outs
AROUND THE GROUNDS: Star recruits shine in Phoenix's big pre-season win

And the Kiwi outfit rubber-stamped his appointment on Thursday, with the Englishman taking over from Wellington’s long-serving captain Andrew Durante, who left in the off-season to join Western United FC.

"It is an incredible honour for me in my career to captain this club," Taylor said on Wellington's official website.

"The manager announced it before our first pre-season game and it made me very proud to know I’ll be leading this team.

"You expect a captain to lead from the front and give 100% effort in every game so I will make sure to set that example. This club has had some outstanding captains and I look to that legacy and emulate those leaders."

Steven Taylor; Andrew Durante
Taylor has big shoes to fill as the new Phoenix skipper, taking over fom club legend Andrew Durante

Taylor, 33, played more than 200 games for Newcastle United and impressed in his maiden Phoenix campaign last year alongside Durante in central defence.

He played a huge part in the club’s run to the finals with his 22 appearances helping Phoenix reach their first finals position in four seasons.

"Steven has enjoyed football at the highest level in the Premier League and now carries the experience of a year in the Hyundai A-League so he will be the perfect leader," Talay said.

"He has shown to be a real professional on and off the field and will be a mentor to the young players within the squad."

The club also confirmed midfielder Alex Rufer will be vice-captain of the team

CACACE: Singh's Bayern move has given Kiwi youngsters belief
MEXICAN MAGIC: New attacker Davila 'ticks all the boxes' for Talay

Taylor will skipper Phoenix in his first competitive match next week as they begin their campaign in the FFA Cup 2019 Round of 32.

The Kiwi outfit will travel to Perry Park to take on Queensland NPL side Brisbane Strikers on Wednesday, August 7.