ISL: Odisha FC sign former Newcastle United defender Steven Taylor

Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

Odisha FC on Wednesday signed former English Premier League defender Steven Taylor ahead of the seventh edition of the Hero Indian Super League (ISL).

The centre-back has agreed a one-year deal with an option to extend it for a second year.

Making his senior club debut with Newcastle United in 2003-04 season, the 34-year-old played for more than a decade in the Premier League before making a move to American professional club Portland Timbers in 2016.

The London-born footballer had also represented England B and other English clubs like Wycombe Wanderers FC, Ipswich Town FC and Peterborough United FC, and has played age-group tournaments for England's U-16, U-17, U-20 and U-21 teams.

Before joining the Bhubaneswar-based ISL team, Taylor was the captain of New Zealand's Wellington Phoenix FC in the Australian A-League.

His towering presence in the defence helped the Wellington side to a third-placed finish last season. Taylor played 49 games for the A-League side over two seasons and became a fan favourite.

Welcoming the new centre-back, Odisha FC Head Coach Stuart Baxter said, "Steven's credentials speak for themself, but more than that we are bringing leadership qualities into our young squad. He is an exceptional defender and is a presence that will give the whole team a whole boost."