Andy Taylor: Walsall defender signs new two-year deal at Bescot

Walsall defender Andy Taylor has ended speculation about his future by signing a new two-year contract.

The 28-year-old has made 72 appearances in two seasons, scoring once, since signing for Dean Smith's men.

"It was just about getting everything sorted off the pitch and now that's done. I'm really happy. The two-year deal gives me and my family some security and that's really important.

"I'm looking forward to knuckling down and kicking on from here," he said.

Dean Smith's Saddlers squad

Walsall manager Dean Smith
  • Goalkeepers: Richard O'Donnell, Craig MacGillivray
  • Defenders: Andy Taylor, James Chambers, Paul Downing, James O'Connor, Mal Benning, Ben Purkiss, Matt Preston, Dean Holden (player-coach)
  • Midfielders: Sam Mantom, Adam Chambers, James Baxendale, Romaine Sawyers, Reece Flanagan, Kieron Morris, Liam Kinsella, Jake Heath
  • Strikers: Amadou Bakayoko, Tom Bradshaw

Taylor, who first signed professional forms with his home town club Blackburn Rovers 10 years ago, represented England at Under-20 level during his four years at Ewood Park, but also spent time out on loan with four different clubs.

He subsequently had spells with Tranmere and Sheffield United before moving to Bescot, where he is now looking to build on successive League One mid-table finishes - ninth in 2012-13, then 13th last season after a late-season slump ended their play-off hopes.

"I've said from day one that I've enjoyed my time here and I like how the manager works," added Taylor. "We proved last season that we can mix it with any team at this level.

"Last season, it was probably against the 'lesser' teams that we let ourselves down a bit. The key word is 'consistency'.

"If we can get that, then I'm sure we can push on and have a successful season. I'm just pleased that I'm going to be part of it."

Walsall have so far made three summer signings, experienced defender James O'Connor, released by Derby County, young goalkeeper Craig MacGillivray from Harrogate Town, and Shrewsbury Town striker Tom Bradshaw.