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By ESPN Staff

Keeping Taylor a priority for the Toon

Newcastle chairman Chris Mort has vowed to thrash out a new deal with blossoming defender Steven Taylor. The 22-year-old was offered a new contract in September after establishing himself in the first team, but was unimpressed with what was on the table. To his credit, he has continued to enhance his reputation under new manager Kevin Keegan, and having insisted all along his only wish is to stay with the club he supported as a boy, has made himself a key member of the side. Mort has already been charged with the task of persuading star striker Michael Owen his future remains on Tyneside, and while the issues are different with Taylor, he will hope to bring an end to the long-running saga in short order. He said: 'Steven Taylor is a young and very promising defender in the team. 'We would like him to stay at Newcastle United long term. We will sit down with Steven and his father, and hopefully work something out.' Greenwich-born Taylor, who was brought up in Newcastle, has been represented by father Alf throughout his career to date, but has now engaged London-based agent Leon Angel to help look after his interests.