Steven Taylor explains the reasons why he’s retired despite feeling ok to continue
News broke earlier on Monday that Steven Taylor had retired from playing.
The former Newcastle United calling it a day at the age of 35.
However, now the central defender has revealed that he thinks he could have coped fine physically with another couple of years in the A-League, with other factors intervening and making him decide to quit at this point.
Steven Taylor was actually made captain of Wellington Phoenix only a matter of days before this announcement and played in a pre-season friendly on Saturday.
The double whammy that led to what Steven Taylor says is an earlier retirement (physically), was the fact that Wellington Phoenix are once again going to be based in Australia (New South Wales) until at least January, due to Covid. Plus the fact that the Phoenix had only offered him a one year extension last season, meant that this 2021/22 season with ‘home’ games set to be played largely / completely in Australia, would be the final one where he was guaranteed to still be contracted to the club.
Steven Taylor speaking to Stuff:
“I was looking out at every single player, and wow. It was hard. I’m not going to lie. I’m not going to sugar coat it. I told the boys, ‘listen, this is the decision I’ve made.’ But it was tough.
“I lived the dream. I enjoyed it. I’m leaving on a high. I know I can go away with a good feeling and I hope the Phoenix understand that I gave everything on the pitch. I would get hit in the face, and I loved that.
“I want to thank the fans for all the support they gave me. They have been unbelievable.
“100 per cent [I have retired] There’s no chance I would leave the Phoenix to go to another club. That would not happen.
“If we were based in Wellington, 100 per cent it would be a no-brainer [to stay]. That’s why I signed here and I think everyone understands that.
“My team-mates understand that. They know how much I love playing in front of the Yellow Fever.
“Playing at Sky Stadium, that’s why I’m a professional footballer, for that atmosphere. It’s disappointing that I can’t do that.
“My biggest thing now is my family. I haven’t been able to see them.
“I would have loved for my parents to have watched my last game, but it couldn’t be because of the situation with Covid.
“It’s been a frustrating time for me. Wherever I’ve gone Covid has followed. I went to India and effectively had six months of quarantine.
“I came back to Wollongong, Covid followed with the lockdown and I was by myself again.
“I came out of lockdown here and the manager said once you get out of lockdown everything would be fine.
“I’ve had a bit of bad luck.”
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