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Phoenix captain Steven Taylor: We don’t show teams respect, we get after them


Phoenix captain Steven Taylor is putting his team’s improved results down to their do-or-die attitude.

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The former Newcastle United centre back on a tough start to the A-League campaign, the “toxic” atmosphere at Arsenal and fellow defender Virgil van Dijk missing out on the Ballon D’Or. Source: 1 NEWS

Back-to-back wins over Adelaide and Brisbane have seen the Wellington-based side climb to ninth on the A-League table after a difficult start to the season.

Taylor, speaking to TVNZ FC today, said the all-out approach may have cost them earlier in the campaign but was now reaping rewards.

“I think the Sydney game showed us, second half, we were full on - we didn’t show any respect. A lot of teams show these teams respect," he said.

“We get at teams, sometimes it’s bit us in the backside, but one thing we do is we’re entertaining and we’re doing exactly what we believe we can do and take the game to teams.”

The defeat in Sydney was one of four straight losses, but the Phoenix are now unbeaten in three.

Taylor summarised the attitude in the camp under new coach Ufuk Talay as: “Never get too high, never get too low – that’s what we keep on saying. We’ve had some bad results, but don’t dwell on that.”

The veteran of more than 200 games for Newcastle United added: “Don’t be expecting the manager to come and get you out of jail. It’s a man’s game, you’ve got to step up to the plate and accept the criticism.”

The Phoenix’s next A-League fixture is against Western Sydney Wanderers at Eden Park in Auckland on Saturday night.

Watch the show above to also hear Taylor describe himself as “loud and hyper” , and get his views on a “toxic” atmosphere at Arsenal and who he would have voted for in the Ballon D’Or – fellow defender Virgil van Dijk or the master Lionel Messi.

* TVNC FC is a weekly football show available on the 1 NEWS website, TVNZ’s Duke channel, Facebook , Youtube and as a podcast.