Last season, it was Everton’s Leighton Baines who took the plaudits as the Premier League’s best left back last season. However, this season it could be the turn of another former Wigan left back to take that plaudit. That player is Newcastle United’s Ryan Taylor, who has enjoyed a great start to the season in an unfamiliar role of left back after only managing 5 appearances last season during an injury hit season.
Having started off his career at Tranmere Rover; in which he gained his reputation as a regular goal scorer from right back mainly due to his set pieces, he spent 3 seasons there before a £750,000 move to Wigan Athletic in the Premier League saw him jump up 2 divisions. His first season was injury hit and in his second season at the Latics, he scored his first goal for Wigan with one of his trademark free kicks. The next season and a half saw more starts for Taylor and he played 30 games in this time period, scoring 5 goals in the process, with 3 of those goals coming against his future club of Newcastle. He moved to Tyneside in February 2009, shortly before the club’s relegation to the Championship. It was in this season where he established his place in the side, with him playing 31 games and scoring 4 goals at right back. After Newcastle’s return to the Premier League, he fell out of the side again with James Perch grabbing his spot in the side and he suffered yet another injury. However, his luck began to change when Alan Pardew took over as manager and starts became more frequent for the former Wigan player.
He has helped to play a crucial part in the Magpies unbeaten start to the season and has scored 2 goals in his 11 games so far, with the goals being a free kick against arch rivals Sunderland and a spectaculars volley against Everton. Should he continue in this form, an England call up won’t be far away for the converted left back.
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