Blues keeper lauds hero Given

02 November 2009 03:51
Northern Ireland number one Taylor has played with and against some of the best goalkeepers around, including Edwin van der Sar during their spell together at Fulham.[LNB]But he feels Given is currently at the peak of his career, as demonstrated during Sunday's goalless draw at St Andrew's.[LNB]Given pulled off a series of fine saves, most notably a second-half penalty stop from James McFadden, to earn his team a fortunate point.[LNB]Taylor said: "How good is Given? He was always top quality at Newcastle but, since he has gone to Manchester City, he has almost gone to another level.[LNB]"He really is one of the world's best, not just in the Premier League, and he never put a foot wrong against us.[LNB]"His kicking and distribution was unbelievable and everything is top drawer about Shay at the moment. He is really on song.[LNB]"But he has worked extremely hard to get to the level that he is at now and good luck to him.[LNB]"He broke our hearts but it was a fantastic save from the penalty. It was a decent penalty. He definitely earned them a point and we felt a bit deflated.[LNB]"Shay rarely makes a mistake. Keepers are judged on mistakes and reliability and he rarely makes them.[LNB]"But in addition to that he also comes up with a world-class save when needed as well. He is a very good presence for Man City and I can't praise him highly enough."[LNB]City boss Mark Hughes echoed Taylor's sentiments and said: "That is why I brought Shay to the club because I knew he would have that capacity when you need someone to produce something for you to keep you in the game.[LNB]"Shay has done that right throughout his career and he was exceptional again at Birmingham to earn us the point."[LNB]Hughes is aware that City can play a lot better but is hoping skipper Kolo Toure and striker Emmanuel Adebayor will be available after injury for Saturday's home game with Burnley.[LNB]He said: "We are missing a couple of players and we have got players coming back from injury as well so that's got to have an impact.[LNB]"Adebayor and Toure haven't trained a great deal in the last two or three weeks so they need a good week of training and hopefully they will be an option next weekend."[LNB]Birmingham boss Alex McLeish is happy with the progress being made by his players, many of whom are short of Premier League experience, during the opening two and a half months of the campaign.[LNB]He said: "It was a disappointed dressing room after the game because they knew they had a real chance of getting the three points.[LNB]"Everyone was saying Birmingham would do well to keep the score down but it was a very positive performance and the players gave everything.[LNB]"They were awesome in their energy and what they put into the game. We are just lacking that finishing touch to one or two things but I think we are still improving.[LNB]"It is a new experience for a lot of the players, playing in the Premier League, and a lot of these guys are developing extremely well."[LNB]McLeish added: "I liked the performance against Sunderland last week and I've now seen two games in a row of great consistency and quality and the players have got to take that forward.[LNB]"The evidence is there that they can compete at this level. It should be planted in their minds now."[LNB][LNB]

Source: Team_Talk