Friday morning has seen reports that Steven Taylor could be on the verge of being offered a new contract at Newcastle United.

Whilst most Newcastle fans assumed that the end of Taylor’s contract would guarantee the end of his United career, the Chronicle claim that it is still in the balance as to whether a new deal will be offered to the central defender.

The delay on confirmation as to whether the soon to be out of contract (30 June 2016) Taylor and Kevin Mbabu will be offered new deals, is said to be due to the situation with Rafa Benitez.

The BBC reported yesterday that rather than just ‘fine details’ to be sorted, instead Rafa Benitez has still not had agreement from Mike Ashley on the transfer budget that the manager feels he will need to take Newcastle straight back up.

Any decision to extend Steven Taylor’s stay at St James Park is certain to disappoint the vast majority of fans, with it being as welcome as the astonishing decision to give Fabricio Coloccini a new deal last summer.

Of course if Rafa Benitez is still at the club any murmurs of discontent would be minimal – but if Rafa left AND then Steven Taylor was given a new contract, it would leave many supporters fearing the worst for the rest of the summer – with mistakes not appearing to have been learnt from.

With Jamaal Lascelles and Chancel Mbemba, of the current players, the overwhelming choice of supporters to start next season as first choice centre-backs, the idea of retaining both central defenders (Coloccini and Taylor) who helped take Newcastle down seven years ago would be difficult to comprehend.

Thursday night we published the results of our recent poll, in it we asked fans to pick 10 Newcastle players who would be the core group to try and get Newcastle out of the Championship come next May.

With thousands of Newcastle supporters voting, the results (see below) were conclusive…

As you can see, Lascelles and Mbemba had huge (98% and 97%) support from fans.

As for the two players who see their contracts run out this summer, Kevin Mbabu had a very decent 46% of Newcastle fans seeing him as one of United’s key 10 players to take on the Championship but Steven Taylor was down amongst the dead men with only 2% support.

After collating the votes, these were the percentage of fans who voted for each of the Newcastle players:

99% Andros Townsend

98% Jamaal Lascelles

97% Chancel Mbemba

87% Aleksandar Mitrovic

86% Rolando Aarons

84% Ayoze Perez

79% Adam Armstrong

66% Jonjo Shelvey

62% Paul Dummett

53% Jack Colback

52% Vurnon Anita

46% Kevin Mbabu

44% Gini Wijnaldum

31% Moussa Sissoko

27% Daryl Janmaat

21% Cheick Tiote

15% Siem de Jong

13% Ivan Toney

12% Massadio Haidara

4% Henri Saivet

4% Florian Thauvin

2% Sammy Ameobi

2% Fabricio Coloccini

2% Papiss Cisse

2% Steven Taylor

2% Seydou Doumbia

1% Yoan Gouffran

1% Emmanuel Riviere