Wellington Phoenix has made the first big signing of the Mark Rudan era with former Newcastle United and England defender Steven Taylor agreeing to terms with the Hyundai A-League club.
Taylor, who was last playing in England's League One with Peterborough last season, passed his medical on Monday allowing Phoenix to confirm his signing today.
The 32-year-old has had an illustrious career to date, including his 194 appearances for Newcastle United in the Premier League before going on to join Portland Timbers in the MLS, then Ipswich Town and Peterborough United in the English Football League.
"As soon as I was aware of the interest, I knew it was an opportunity that I couldn’t pass up," Taylor said.
"I was here in 2014 as part of the Football United Tour when we played in Dunedin and Wellington and loved the country then.
"I know that I am joining an exciting project under Mark as well as playing in one of the best leagues in the world in the A-League".
Taylor is the first new signing for the Phoenix as part of their recruitment drive heading into the Hyundai A-League 2018/19 Season.
The tough-tackling centre-back arrives with a wealth of achievements, winning the UEFA Intertoto Cup in 2006 before winning the Football League Championship in the 2009/10 season, both while at Newcastle.
“Steven is a significant signing for the football club in what we are trying to create," coach Mark Rudan said.
“He brings a huge amount of experience and strong leadership.
“We expect Steven to be a success on and off the park.”
Taylor will meet his new teammates as he begins training with the squad this week.
His potential competitive debut could see him up against Bentleigh Greens in the FFA Cup Round of 32 on August 7th in Melbourne.
Steven Taylor At A Glance
Professional Playing Career
2017 Peterborough United - Coach Steve Evans
2017 Ipswich Town - Coach Mick McCarthy
2016 Portland Timbers - Coach Caleb Porter
2003-16 Newcastle United - Coaches: Sir Bobby Robson, Graeme Souness, Glenn Roeder, Sam Allardyce, Kevin Keegan, Chris Hughton, Joe Kinnear, Alan Shearer, Alan Pardew, Steve McClaren and Rafael Benitez.
2009-10 Football League Championship 2006 UEFA Intertoto Cup
2003-04 Wycombe Wanderers - Coach Tony Adams