Why Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder was keen to sign ex-Aston Villa and Swansea defender Neil Taylor

Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder says the signing of full-back Neil Taylor is a smart piece of business.

Thursday, 18th November 2021, 6:12 pm

Boro have been short of cover in defence this season and forced to play people out of position when first-choice left-back Marc Bola has been sidelined through injury.

That is why the club have offered Taylor, who was released by Aston Villa in the summer, a short-term contract until January.

The 32-year-old has been training with Boro and played for the club’s under-23 side against Nottingham Forest last week.

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Neil Taylor playing for Aston Villa.

Taylor also made 179 appearances for Swansea before joining Villa in 2017, and has been capped 43 times by Wales at international level.

Boro had been searching the free agent market for full-backs while Neil Warnock was in charge of the club, before Wilder replaced the 72-year-old earlier this month

When discussing Taylor’s arrival, Wilder told Boro’s website: "Looking at the market we're in at this particular time it's a great one for us.

"He adds balance and competition to Marc Bola which is desperately needed.

"Neil's a player of pedigree with a great attitude. He's still fit and played for the U23s for an hour last week, I think it's a smart bit of business until the middle of January then we can go from there."

Wilder will take charge of his first Boro game this weekend when the Teessiders host Millwall in the Championship.

Boro are 14th in the table but are just four points off the play-off places following a 1-1 draw at West Brom before the international break.

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