Former Newcastle United defender Steven Taylor signs for MLS club Portland Timbers
By Nathan Orr
Last Updated: 01/08/16 7:48pm
Former Newcastle United defender Steven Taylor has signed for MLS side Portland Timbers.
Taylor, who made over 260 appearances at St James' Park, joins on a two-and-a-half-year deal and will make his debut against Sporting Kansas City on Sunday.
The 30-year-old failed to agree a new contract deal under Magpies boss Rafael Benitez towards the end of last season and has now opted to play in the North American league with the likes of Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and Robbie Keane.
"The excitement I've got is like when I left school at 16 to play professional - it's like a new lease of life," said Taylor.
"Everyone at Portland Timbers is making me very welcome and I just want to get playing again. My main goal is to win stuff and enjoy my football playing week in, week out, there is no better feeling than that.
"The fans sing all game I understand, in MLS everyone talks about the Portland Timbers fans. I think you have to experience it for yourself."
Portland Timbers were crowned the 2015 MLS Cup Champions, but have had different fortunes this season. They are currently seventh in the Western Conference.
However, Gavin Wilkinson, general manager of the Portland Timbers, is convinced Taylor can help turn things around.
"Taylor is a player with a wealth of experience in the English Premier League and will be a good fit in our club," Wilkinson said.
"This addition addresses a positional need at a critical stage of the season."