Aston Villa left-back reveals why he turned down a move to Newcastle United

Neil Taylor has revealed why he snubbed a move to Newcastle United in 2011.

Tuesday, 9th April 2019, 2:56 pm
Updated Tuesday, 9th April 2019, 2:59 pm
Aston Villa left-back Neil Taylor

Taylor, then at Swansea City, had just been promoted to the Premier League following a win over Reading in the playoff final.

But a few months later, the Magpies were alerted by Taylor in the same transfer window that saw first-choice left-back Jose Enrique depart for Liverpool.

United soon triggered the former Wrexham man's £1million buy-out clause, as confirmed by Swans chairman Huw Jenkins at the time.

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He said: "We have received a proposal from Newcastle regarding Neil, but it has not been accepted or rejected at this stage.

"We have received a number of bids for Neil's services and we will be talking it over with him when he returns from a break next week."

Taylor travelled up to the North East to have a look around St James's Park and the club's Benton training ground.

While he was left impressed by the set up on Tyneside, a phone call from then boss Brendan Rodgers - who just happened to be up a mountain at the time - ended negotiations.

"I was looking at St James' Park and the training ground there and thinking 'wow'," admitted Taylor to the On The Bish podcast.

"The thing was Brendan Rodgers was actually up Kilimanjaro at the time doing a charity thing so his phone was out of range.

"I waited until he got back and then we sat down and had a chat and stuff.

"Obviously he was instrumental with me getting into the Swansea team in the promotion year and everything.

"He just promised me. He said 'Listen, you're part of my plans, you're going to play next season for us in the Premier League and I think you're best being here playing and see what comes after that'.

"I agreed, I said to him 'You're the manager that's given me everything, I enjoy our style of football and I'll stay loyal to that'. So everything worked out and I stayed at Swansea."

The 30-year-old remained in Wales until 2017 before opting for a switch to Championship side Aston Villa.