Stoke City are being linked with a move for Livingston striker Lyndon Dykes, according to reports.
The Scottish Sun reckons Stoke manager Michael O’Neill is interested in the 24 year old goalscorer.
The paper says Dykes has emerged as an alternative to Aberdeen’s Sam Cosgrove, a player heavily linked with Stoke.
They say: “With the Dons vowing he (Cosgrove) won’t be allowed to leave on the cheap, Aussie-born striker Dykes, who can play for Scotland as well as the Socceroos, presents a better value alternative.”
The paper says Dykes is under contract for another two years but would still be a cheaper option than Cosgrove.
Dykes had scored 12 goals in 33 games for the Scottish Premiership club this season before the campaign was suspended.
That included a goal in the 2-0 win at home to Celtic in October – Livingston’s first ever win against the Glasgow giants.
The striker was born and grew up in Australia before moving to Scotland in 2016 to join Queen of the South. He joined Livingston in January 2019, but was loaned back to the Scottish Championship club for the rest of the season.
Speculation about Stoke City and players in Scotland is perhaps no surprise after O’Neill said he is a big fan of the game in Scotland.
He said as much in an interview with StokeonTrentLive at the start of April, having already been linked with Aberdeen’s Cosgrove and Dundee United goal getter Lawrence Shankland in January. More recently there was a report saying he liked the look of Hamilton left back Scott McMann.
In his StokeonTrentLive interview, from his family home north of the border, O’Neill said: “The problem people have with Scottish football is that they probably watch it on television and at times it doesn’t look like a great spectacle because at certain games the stadium is a little bit empty, while the other thing is you see games on artificial pitches.
“It’s about assessing the level of play and then try to benchmark whether those players could step up and play in the Championship.
“There’s players there that have clearly done that, the likes of John McGinn (Aston Villa) and Kenny McClean who went to Norwich, and both of them got promoted with their teams and were very important players to their teams.
“So it’s about trying to find that level of player.”
He says younger Scottish players would cross the border with an appetite.
“The attraction of the market is that players from Scotland going down to England see it as a massive opportunity.” he continued.
“It’s a much bigger league and obviously financially it’s far more rewarding.
“Typically, you’ll get a player with a good attitude who’s hungry to succeed.
“The other thing about the Scottish Premier League is that there’s a lot of young players.
“You can come up here and find 21 year-olds who’ve played a hundred games and that’s quite hard to find in English football, certainly in the Championship and Premier League level.”