Tribute to 'truly special' Hartlepool United fan Michael 'Talla' Taylor after his death aged just 59

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Tributes have been paid to a “Poolie through and through” who has died aged just 59 after an illness.

Michael Taylor, known as Talla, supported Hartlepool United home and away all of his life and was well-known and loved by his fellow supporters.

He died last weekend. Fans are expected to honour him by applauding in the 59th minute of Pools’ next home game on Saturday, February 11.

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Andy Steel, Hartlepool United ambassador and a close friend of Michael’s, paid tribute to him on the club website.

Michael Taylor with son Ellis at the Suit Direct Stadium.Michael Taylor with son Ellis at the Suit Direct Stadium.
Michael Taylor with son Ellis at the Suit Direct Stadium.

He wrote: “Michael followed Pools home and away all of his life and he was, without any shadow of a doubt, a ‘Poolie through and through’.

“As a close friend I spent many an afternoon and night with him and fellow friends dissecting the previous game in the Hartlepool Supporters Club on Sandringham Road.

“He was very knowledgeable about the game and was always constructive about the team and would support them to the hilt whatever our circumstances."

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Andy said Michael was “bursting with pride” when his son Ellis joined Hartlepool on loan from Sunderland’s academy at the beginning of the season.

But he turned down an offer to watch his son’s debut from the director’s box, preferring instead to cheer Ellis on from his usual place on the Mill House terrace.

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Michael’s passion for the club runs in the family with his brother Kevin a regular as well as Ellis who watches Pools when he isn’t playing for Sunderland.

Andy went on: “Even when he was very ill and in great pain Michael still managed to attend the games with his daughter Sophie and partner Wendy supporting the team right until the very end.

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“I will be watching the next home game from the Mill House terrace where he stood with many of his friends and do what he did best, support the team with positivity and passion no matter what the circumstances.

"I can think of no greater tribute to him than the whole crowd to give him a rousing round of applause on the 59th minute of the next home game to celebrate his life and his love for Pools.

"He will be missed by so many a truly special man and 100% ’Poolie through and through’.”

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