DEFENDER Steven Taylor is happy to stay and fight for his place at Newcastle – despite reports suggesting Arsenal are keen on him.
The 27-year-old was the latest Magpie to be linked with a move away from St James’s Park yesterday.
Reports claimed Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger was weighing up a shock swoop for the centre-half as he looks to bolster his defensive ranks.
But it is understood Taylor went away for his summer break happy with life at Newcastle, having been called up by England boss Roy Hodgson for March’s World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro.
Taylor was an unused substitute for the first game, and harbours international aspirations.
But he believes he can achieve those at Newcastle, even if Newcastle strengthen their backline with the signing of a new centre-half this summer.
Boss Alan Pardew wants to bring in another defender, regardless of whether captain Fabricio Coloccini decides to stay on Tyneside.
But that is more likely to mean either James Perch or Mike Williamson leaving the club, rather than Taylor, who would then compete with Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa and the new player for a starting berth in central defence.
Taylor, who is represented by agent Willie McKay, was also linked with French giants Marseille this week.
McKay is also the agent of former Newcastle midfielder Joey Barton, who has spent a season-long loan at the French giants.
Taylor has played 235 games for Newcastle in nine seasons since breaking into the first team as an 18-year-old in 2004, and still has three years to run on his contract.