The left-back’s problems, which ended with his appearance in the club’s 3-0 weekend win at Dundee United, appeared to originate from him putting his shoulder out and being forced off in Dutch-staged Europa League play-off success against AZ Alkmaar way back in late August. In his re-appearance three weeks later for a home win over Ross County, he again suffered the same fate. It seems the effects of the dislocation suggested a weakness in the area that required a specialist solution.
“I got a procedure where you get a bone graft to stabilise it,” the 24-year-old explained. “It was just about making sure the bone had healed and giving it time to heal. But thankfully there were no complications from the operation. I am very grateful to the surgeon but also everyone who has helped me on the way back – the staff, the sports science staff and coaching team.”
A weekend comeback for Taylor, in the frame to face Real Betis on Thursday, wasn’t trailed by Ange Postecoglou, but the player insists it wasn’t a rushed development, coming just as Anthony Ralston was sidelined with an ankle problem that resulted in Josip Juranovic vacating left-back to switch to his more orthodox role. “With my injury, it was a bit different as it was the shoulder,” he said. "I have been training physically for the best part of five weeks, doing running. It was a case of waiting for the go-ahead from the surgeon to resume contact stuff. That happened pretty recently and from that moment, I was available to play. So I wasn't too surprised when the manager put me back in and I was happy to get the chance from him.
"It was a frustrating time for me as I was able to run – but just couldn't take part in full training. At one stage I was doing the same thing every day but we had aims here and there. I was looking to build more strength in my legs and things like that. Before that, I'd never had a long-term injury but I was able to get through it and there was light at the end of the tunnel when I played at Dundee United. It's really to be back playing. It was a long period out. Thankfully, touch wood, that's it over and I can focus on the games up until the winter break.”