World Cup: Taylor sings Vassell's praises

Peter Taylor heaped praise on former England Under-21 striker Darius Vassell for his sparkling debut for the senior squad.

Peter Taylor heaped praise on former England Under-21 striker Darius Vassell for his sparkling debut for the senior squad.

Vassell capped an accomplished all-round display with an acrobatic volley to earn England a draw with Holland.

It was a performance which saw the Aston Villa striker's chances of making the World Cup squad improve markedly.

"It was a fantastic debut," said Taylor, who brought Vassell into the under-21 set-up in April 1999. "I am delighted for him.

"He did some very good things and scored a great goal. He is a confident boy, quick and really strong for his size."

In becoming the first player to score on his England debut since Rob Lee in 1994, Vassell took his tally for the season to 11 goals.

Taylor added: "In the past people have said he hasn't scored enough, but with him playing more first-team football at Aston Villa he has shown he can get his fair share of goals."

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