Matty Taylor

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New manager Alain Perrin utilised Taylor as a left midfielder during the 2005–06 season. On 29 October 2005, he scored from 40 yards at Sunderland's Stadium of Light, winning the BBC Goal of the Month. Spotting the goalkeeper Kelvin Davis off his line, Taylor hit a dipping left-footed half-volley over Davis' head and into the back of the net. Portsmouth had been trailing Sunderland 1–0 in the crucial "six pointer" but Taylor inspired a second half comeback with two goals and two assists in a 4–1 victory. When Harry Redknapp returned, Taylor initially retained his attacking role but the arrival of Andrés D'Alessandro on loan and Redknapp's disapproval of Perrin's left-back, Grégory Vignal, meant that Taylor returned to full-back for the latter stages of the season. 2005–06 could be considered Taylor's breakthrough season as a Premiership footballer. In all he played 34 league games, scoring six goals. Two of these were crucial penalties; one in the last minute against Sunderland to secure a 2–1 win, and another in an away game at Wigan Athletic on 29 April 2006 to clinch another 2–1 win and survival from relegation.