A little write up from a sport journalist on Lyndon Dykes for your info.
“Lyndon Dykes, the Australian terror who can do a job for any team in Scotland
It’s easy to look at a team like Queen of the South, an Ayr United, an Edinburgh City and sing the praises of their top and pretty much only goalscorer and act like every game involving these “one-man teams” is pretty much a 1 v. 11, but that’s not the case, is it? I propose a small experiment you can do next time you watch a game involving a one-man team: work out the top-man’s weaknesses as they all have some, and see who’s picking up the slack for them. No doubt you will find 2 or 3 players who are doing all the running, all the passing, all the hold-up play for the star man, and that’s proven by the fact that even when the top player in these teams turn up on the day in big fashion, they are still beatable, some even… very beatable. Ayr have Moffat and Murdoch, Edinburgh have Smith and Shepherd, but there’s one man who can do all of these players’ jobs, and then some. Lyndon f***ing Dykes.
Queen of the South play a rather strange system, with the big guy up top dropping back to get the ball, allowing Scottish Messi to roam and find the gaps. You would assume this wouldn’t work, and you’d ask yourself “What in the world is Naismith playing at?”, but if there’s one thing the Queens gaffer has nailed down is how to utilise his strikers. Dykes is a workhorse, he does the running for himself and for Dobbie effortlessly and even though most of the time it’s as pretty as a St. Mirren - Hamilton game, it’s effective, and he receives no props for it. It’s a thankless job which he performs week in, week out. Let’s take for example, Queen of the South - Dundee, Scottish Cup replay. Granted, Dobbie scored a hat-trick, one of which was an absolute pinger, so it’s easy to say Stephen Dobbie won that game for Queens. Incorrect. You may think I’m mad, but there’s method to this madness, pull a chair, make a cup of tea or coffee, and let me enlighten you.
Goal number one, Stephen Dobbie screamer. The story of this goal begins with a Dundee corner, dealt with by the Queens defence, and so begins the counter-attack. Dykes is there to pick it up, with Dobbie being allowed to roam in the attacking third, wherever he can find a gap, in this instance, very wide on the right. Dykes is quickly closed down by two Dundee players, makes some room for himself and has the vision and self-awareness to find Dobbie on the right, as let’s be serious, if he kept running he would’ve lost that, but he knows that, which is why he unleashed God on the right. This isn’t where his part in the goal stops however, as Dobbie is surrounded by four Dundee players, Lyndon, along with Todd and Stirling make excellent runs forward to ease the pressure off Dobbie, who finds some space and does what he does best. 1-0. Job nowhere nearly done. Dykes continues to drop back and link up with midfield, bring Dundee players with him wherever he goes, leaving Dobbie acres of space to roam into up top. When defending, Dykes eagerly rushes Dundee defenders, leaving them no room to play the ball, putting in unreal effort to tire out the defence, leaving them clueless when it comes to playing the ball. This influence on the defence, wearing them down minute-by-minute eventually leads to Dobbie’s second. After being pressured for most of the first half by Dykes, an exhausted Innis plays a horrific pass intended for Dieng which Dobbie intercepts and easily puts it past the Dundee keeper. Innis is then subbed off and sent back to Crystal Palace the next day. Dykes’ running ended a player’s Scottish football career. If that isn’t a testament to the effort this man puts in, I don’t know what is. Just before half-time, Lyndon Dykes is there again to get the ball and turn defence into attack, spotting Dieng off his line and thinking “What if I scored from my own half?”. He misses, but it goes to show that he’s a star man, he wants to put on a show, and most importantly he has unreal patter. Throughout the second half Dykes again collects the ball from the halfway line on four occasions and finds Dobbie every time, 1 on 1 with Dieng. One of these, Dobbie miscontrols, the other three Dobbie can’t quite hold his run and is found to be offside. This goes to show the Queens star man isn’t infallible and that Dykes continuously provides for him. You cannot underestimate this man’s service. This leads us to the third and final Queen of the South goal, Dobbie hat-trick. A long ball from the Queens defence finds a Dundee player, and 2-0 up, only two QoS players are the opposition half: the best player on the pitch and Stephen Dobbie. Dykes keeps the pressure on, chasing the Dundee defender for 30 yards which leads to a wayward pass, putting Dobbie through to seal his hat-trick and the Queen of the South victory.
You may look at this last paragraph, with a look on your face resembling that of Sir Isaac Newton upon discovering gravity, and I cannot blame you. In a one man team, it is incredibly hard to find other players who have great impact week in week out, and in this small example, which just so happens to be a game against a Premiership side in which Dobbie found the net 3 times, I think I have made a strong case why Lyndon Dykes is the most impactful player on the pitch for Queens. He doesn’t score goals, but that’s not his job. His job is to run down, press, collect balls from midfield, and most importantly annoy the opposition defence to a level of exhaustion that allows Stephen Dobbie to be the God that he is. I can’t think of a single Premiership side that wouldn’t be greatly improved by Dykes’ unmatched workrate and dedication. If Livingston play him alongside a striker that can finish even a third of his chances, they can finish top 6. Watch out next season for the man that will terrorise your Goldsons, your Ajers and your McKennas into some of the silliest mistakes the Scottish Premiership has ever seen”