Lloyd Dyer has been one of Leicester City’s longest serving current players – but will he be guaranteed a place in the starting XI this season?
As we count down Leicester City’s top position battles this season, we take a look at the midfield where youth and experience will battle it out for a starting place at the King Power Stadium.
4. Anthony Knockaert v. Lloyd Dyer
The recent signing of 20-year old Anthony Knockaert from French club side Guingamp provides Leicester City with an added dimension in attacking football. The youngster can play on either the left or right wing, and also as a forward. With Ben Marshall likely to start on the right side, Knockaert provides, at the very least, healthy competition for veteran winger Lloyd Dyer, who Nigel Pearson initially signed in 2009 from MK Dons.
Nigel Pearson has already stated that he hopes Knockaert will play a big part in Leicester’s season, and also that he has the ability to become a successful player in the Championship. Although having been previously linked with a move to Newcastle United, he is still somewhat of an unknown quantity to football fans in the UK. That being said, Leicester City’s chief scout Steve Walsh has a tendency to find real gems in the transfer market. Lloyd Dyer did receive a lot more playing time after Sven-Goran Eriksson parted ways with the club, although Pearson did seem keen to alternate various formations to accommodate the ability of Ben Marshall. If Leicester do revert to a 4-4-2 formation rather than switching to a 4-3-3/4-5-1, this is likely to favour Dyer as he is more of an out-and-out winger, whereas Knockaert’s versatility would allow him to also play as part of a front three.
Likely winner: Given Lloyd Dyer’s age and the fact that he was generally used as a bit-part player last season, Anthony Knockaert should start ahead of him in 2012/13. That being said, it’s likely that Dyer will still be used in rotation along with set-piece specialist Paul Gallagher.