I wanted to experience a different culture, and I would regularly say that to my agent, but it never materialised. Something like this would have been fantastic for me, because it opens up so many different avenues to different leagues that you maybe wouldn't give a thought to.
Andrew Taylor had a long career in English football, making over 100 Premier League appearances and helping Middlesbrough reach the final of what is now the UEFA Europa League in 2006.
But like the majority of professionals he played with and against, his entire career was spent in the English football pyramid, with Boro, Cardiff City, Wigan Athletic and Bolton Wanderers among his clubs.
Getting an opportunity to move abroad and fulfill a career ambition by playing in another continent seems unrealistic for many players.
That is often because they will have an agent who has a limited network of contacts, typically in their home country, and a lack of direct access to decision makers at clubs worldwide.
Now TransferRoom is giving players the opportunity to take control of their own careers and find a verified Trusted Agent with a proven track record in the leagues they want to play in, through the groundbreaking, new AgentFinder feature.
And for those players who have agents on TransferRoom already, the agencies can share a real-time feed of the activity they’re doing for that player in the transfer market, including pitches to clubs and clubs’ feedback, and earn High Transparency Status.
Taylor, who is nurturing the next generation as Loans Manager at Leeds United, says having such a platform when he was a player would have given him a chance to fulfil his dream of playing in North America’s top league, Major League Soccer.
“I look back now, certainly towards the end of my career, and I would have loved to go abroad,” says Taylor in the video below.
“I wanted to experience a different culture, whether that was America, Australia or elsewhere in Europe, and I would regularly say that to my agent, but it never materialised.
“For whatever reason, I don't know, not that he didn't do a good job, but he might not have had the relative contacts in those certain leagues.
“Something like this would have been fantastic for me, because it opens up so many different avenues to different leagues that you maybe wouldn't give a thought to.
“I wanted to go to the MLS or the league below, the USL Championship. Certainly, when I was later on in my career.
“It was never about the money. I just wanted the experience of going over there and playing in a different league in a different environment, different culture, and it just didn't materialise for whatever reason.
“And that's something like this maybe would have facilitated that better, would have made it, would it have made it possible? Who knows? I certainly think it would have made it a lot easier for that move to happen for me.”
Helping the young players at Leeds United to maximise their potential and their career choices is an important part of Taylor’s role, and that includes those who are out of contract or likely to move away from Elland Road.
Take control of your own career
Taylor says working with a Trusted Agent on TransferRoom, which means they are verified as the representative of all their players on the platform, can make it easier for young players to find an agent who they can rely on to act in their best interests.
“It offers a lot of transparency and clarity for players,” Taylor adds. “We say it regularly to our players, especially the younger lads. Take control of your own career.
“It's sometimes very easy to allow representatives and different people to maybe control or you feel like they're controlling your career and what they say is fully correct.
“Certainly as a young player, you don't know who's trustworthy, who's good, who's not generally a lot of it will come from word of mouth, from your team-mates and different things.
“But I think if you can go on here and actually find an agent who's been verified, who is respected, who is trusted.
“It's a massive plus for, for any young player or any player who hasn't got an agent and who is in need of one to be able to go in to an area where every agent on there are actually, vetted, they verified, they trusted and it, yeah, it helps the process for sure.”
Are you a professional player looking to expand your transfer opportunities and accelerate your career? Register for TransferRoom today and connect with your agent to benefit from their direct access to decision makers at over 650 clubs worldwide.