Women's Team

Taylor ready to lead City to next level

Taylor ready to lead City to next level
Gareth Taylor says he is relishing the challenge of guiding City to the next level on all fronts.

The 47-year-old former player and Academy manager has been appointed Head Coach of City’s women’s team, succeeding Nick Cushing, who departed for pastures new with New York City FC following a trophy-laden six-year spell at the helm.

With eight years of coaching experience within the Club and City Football Group, Taylor holds a wealth of knowledge and experience in developing talent and says he is eyeing a period of sustained success across all competitions as City look to progress both on and off the pitch.

“I’ve had some great interaction and conversations with Omar and Gavin,” he said. “They trust me to be that person.

“It’s now my job and responsibility to go and continue with the success the Club has had in recent years. I’m really looking forward to that.

“We’re progressive. The Club have been the flagbearers for the women’s game over the initial period of inauguration and we’re now looking to improve.

“Improving means the domestic title – we’ve been successful once so far – first and foremost. Then, we’ll look at the competitions where we've been successful previously in the cups, and the Champions League is obviously something the Club want to progress in.

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“We’ve come close previously and it’s not going to be easy. In cup competitions, anything can happen on the day.

“That will be one of our aims: to look to progress in the Champions League and try and show some success in that competition.”

In a bid to progress, Taylor also revealed recruitment plans are under way to further bolster the squad, while several current members have already committed their futures to the Club, penning contract extensions in recent months.

“There’s a lot of work that’s been going on,” he explained. “It’s great that we’ve secured these players. We have some really good, young, talented players and great experience there as well. There’s a nice balance.

“Gavin (Makel) and Omar (Berrada) did a great job in securing these players for a longer period.

“It’s exciting times. I’ve come in a little bit late to the party (in terms of recruitment) but Gavin and Alan (Mahon, assistant manager) have been really working hard on creating those relationships, trying to improve on our squad, which we’re keen to do.

                        Taylor ready to lead City to next level

“Those conversations are ongoing, I’m aware of them. We want to progress, improve and hopefully, we can do that and get some of those deals across the line.”

Taylor’s appointment almost marks the 21st anniversary of the day he stepped out at Wembley with City in the Division Two Play-Off Final.

Helping the Club to back-to-back promotions during his spell at Maine Road, Taylor always held fond memories of his time in sky blue, deeming the period one of the proudest of his 20-year playing career.

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“21 years ago!” he exclaimed. “It was a slightly different Club back then but that was a proud period, especially looking back.

“At the time, we didn’t feel it was as important moment as what it is now. I still interact with few of the players. On the 20-year anniversary last year, we had a really good get together, which was great, and we were talking about it recently – about the team spirit we had in the changing room.

“To see the Club where it is now is amazing. I’m fortunate enough to have been there at beginning and in the current period as well. It’s pretty mad when you see the growth!

“It goes to show. Like I say, I’m really fortunate to be part of this Club, working with some great people and I’m really looking forward to the next part of the journey.”

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With Taylor’s unveiling announced on the week in which the FA Women’s Super League heralded its conclusion, the new boss admitted that while the news proved disappointing, it ultimately marked the correct decision and on a positive note, allows him a fresh start.

“From a personal point of view, it probably helps in that respect, I can imagine,” he stated.

“For long periods, we thought the season would be finished but the longer the period has gone on, with everything considered, it was probably the right decision to do that without impacting too much on next season.

“It is what it is. The decision was made for us through the safety for everyone involved. We had to go with that and respect it and look forward to start of next season.

“We’ve been successful previously and want to take it onto the next step. There have been some clear objectives discussed.

“We’re wanting to be progressive as a Club – be successful, be world-leading – and we have been the flagbearers for a few years, pushing boundaries.

“There is a step up (for me) – there’s no denying that – but it’s one I’m ready for and looking forward to.

“I didn’t feel like I could make an impression in this role, I wouldn't have been interested. That’s one of the many reasons I wanted to join.

“I’m really excited about it.”

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