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Walsall appoint Matthew Taylor as new head coach

Walsall appoint Matthew Taylor as new head coach
© Reuters
The 39-year-old has been Tottenham's under-18 coach since 2019.

Walsall have appointed Matthew Taylor as their new head coach.

Taylor, 39, will join the Saddlers on June 1 from Tottenham, where he has been in charge of the under-18 team.

"As with a lot of things in football, they move fast and this is no exception," Taylor told Walsall's website.

"I'm extremely honoured to be given the opportunity to be head coach of Walsall and I'm really excited. In football and life, a lot of it is about timing and in my opinion it's very good timing.

"Winning football matches is never easy but what I've learnt in the last two years gives me an opportunity to build a style of play that the fans resonate with and enjoy watching, with the aim of delivering positive results on the pitch.

"It's about building an identity of what we are and that the football team on the pitch replicates this on the pitch.

"One thing I can guarantee to all the supporters is their team will always give 100 per cent on the pitch because as a player, I was always that way and as a coach, I'm always that way and therefore I expect the players to reflect that."

Taylor made over 700 appearances in a 20-year senior playing career, with more than 300 of them coming in the Premier League at Bolton, Burnley, Portsmouth and West Ham.

He had a brief spell as Swindon's interim manager in 2018 and joined Spurs the following year.

Taylor will be assisted at Walsall by former Blackpool manager Neil McDonald, who has also coached at Bolton, Blackburn and West Ham.

Saddlers chairman Leigh Pomlett said: "Matthew is young, ambitious and successful and I am delighted that we have been able to attract him to leave Tottenham Hotspur to become our head coach."

Walsall finished 19th in Sky Bet League Two this season after manager Darrell Clarke left them in February to join Port Vale.

Clarke's successor Brian Dutton left Walsall earlier this month after winning only three of his 20 games in charge.

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Walsall's head coach Brian Dutton pictured in March 2021
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Friday's key events

· The athletics schedule begins, with 100m sprinter Dina Asher-Smith among the names in action on the opening day. The men's 10,000m final concludes the action, with Team GB's Sam Atkin and Marc Scott taking part in the absence of 2012 and 2016 champion Sir Mo Farah (1am-2.30pm)

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