We have been here before, a new manager that talks the talk, and wins the fans over from day one. Matt Taylor has certainly impressed with his charm, excitement, and plan for the club. So can he be the man to finally change the fortunes of the Saddlers?
Honesty is key
I will admit, Clarke was the big, bold personality that needed to lift the club post relegation, and he was a character I instantly took too. However the talk and bravado batted away the harsh reality that he was not doing a good enough job. When he left, I was disappointed, not at the loss of him, but the pile of incomplete promises he left behind. I felt well and truly misled for 18 months.
Enter the ring Matt Taylor. He has laid his cards out early doors, and it is so refreshing already. Taylor has admitted he will learn whilst here, and that mistakes will be made. He wants to take the club on a journey, and I will be backing him to do so, and I believe he can. His calm yet excited demeanour has instantly meant he has earned trust, which has been lacking from the fan base for a long time.
I am impressed with the way Taylor is going about his early days. His openness about using the staff around him to grow in his role is a huge factor in this. Some will look to this as weakness, however it shows much more strength in him as a character and a person.
The fans team
Taylor spoke about the team being ‘theirs’, in relation to the fans. He has had a fantastic playing career that he shared with fans from many clubs. His early acknowledgement that the fans are the clubs heartbeat was genuinely meant. Often in press conferences, players and staff will mention the fans, but as a way to tick a box, mention the fans and job done. But Taylor means it, and he intends to bring in personnel who mean it too. The team will be the fans team, but led by someone we trust, and see as one of us.
Clarke gave off a ‘he who shouts loudest’ vibe, which almost falsified desire and determination. Taylor acts very differently. He has a quiet drive to succeed, and one that draws more people in, and has more people believing that what he says now will come to fruition.
Back to basics?
Plain and simply, Taylor is a football fan, and his idea of filling the club with good, honest, coachable people is a back to basics approach. By getting the right characters through the door, he knows he will have a team, not individuals to work with.
This team will be coached by a set-up that is balanced. Taylor’s ‘fresh from playing’ approach, with McDonald’s nous from years of coaching is something that will serve the collective well, and it is that team ethic that will make the Saddlers an attractive proposal for a lot of players.
A person worth backing!
In his solo interview with the club, Taylor put out a plea for the fans to come and back him and the team, to get on board with the journey he hopes to take us on. He knows the trust between fans and club is low, especially after years of let down and decline.
His way of admitting that things may take a bit of time, and that results won’t always go his way made me trust him more. A career of highs and lows has made Taylor wise to giving false hope, and what we all want right now, is better football, and someone genuine and relatable to have lead our club.
One big part of why I am on board with Taylor is because it feels like a fresh approach. We all want to back the Head Coach, and at the moment, nothing has made me not want to get behind Matt Taylor.