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Portland Timbers and Steven Taylor Part Ways

MLS: Portland Timbers at Colorado Rapids Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The Portland Timbers’ offseason makeover continued today as the team parted ways with English center back Steven Taylor. According to a press release from the Timbers, the move was mutually agree to by Taylor and the team.

In a thank you note posted to the Timbers website, Taylor thanked the team and fans for his time in Portland before confirming that he will be returning to the “other side of the Atlantic.”

Taylor’s time with the Timbers was brief, arriving late in the 2016 season and struggling to settle in to a Timbers back line that was already in turmoil. Taylor started nine games for the Timbers as they made their push for the playoffs, but ultimately fell short of the number six seed.

The highlight of Taylor’s time with the Timbers was certainly his header goal against the Seattle Sounders in August, putting the Timbers up 4-0 at the end of the first half.

The move leaves the Timbers with only fifteen players on their roster following the announcement of the side’s offseason option decisions on Monday. Without Taylor, the Timbers now find themselves with two center backs under contract, Liam Ridgewell and Gbenga Arokoyo, and in negotiations to bring back two other players who can play the position, Amobi Okugo and Taylor Peay.

The Timbers’ press release:


PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Timbers and defender Steven Taylor have mutually agreed to part ways, it was announced today.

In the 2016 campaign, Taylor appeared in nine MLS regular-season games (9 starts) for Portland, scoring one goal in a 4-2 victory over Seattle Sounders FC on Aug. 28 at Providence Park.

“We appreciate Steven’s contributions while in Portland and wish him all the best,” said Gavin Wilkinson, general manager and president of soccer for the Timbers.

Taylor, 30, signed with Portland on Aug. 1, 2016, after spending 13 seasons in England with Newcastle United F.C.

Transaction: Portland Timbers and Steven Taylor mutually agree to terminate the defender’s contract on Dec. 15, 2016.