Taylor had a relatively modest career as a professional player, making a total of 341 League appearances as a full-back for Grimsby Town and Lincoln City. But he went straight into managership at Lincoln in his late 20s and had five years in charge there, taking the Red Imps up into Division Three.
Elton John spotted his potential and took him to Watford, then in the bottom division, in 1977. In his ten years at Vicarage Road the club won three promotions, reached The FA Cup Final and played in the UEFA Cup.
Further success at Aston Villa, taking them to runners-up behind Liverpool in his last season, convinced The FA to offer him the England job after Italia ‘90.
He won his first match 1-0, a Wembley friendly against Hungary, and remained unbeaten in a 12-match debut season. But disappointments followed, England going out in the First Round at Euro '92 and failing to make the World Cup Finals in America two years later.
Taylor and assistant Lawrie McMenemy resigned after a 7-1 win against San Marino.