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Leicester City 'could have been one of top sides'

Remember Steve Lynex? He was part Leicester City's best forward line. Rob Tanner talks to him.

Mention the name Steve Lynex to older Leicester City fans and it will conjure memories of one of the club's best forward lines.

The Black Country-born winger forged an effective and exciting attacking axis alongside young strikers Gary Lineker and Alan Smith in the early 1980s as City were promoted to then-First Division under Gordon Milne, in 1983.

Although a winger and therefore more of a provider, Lynex also reached double figures in goals scored for three of his five full seasons at the club, and took on the role of penalty-taker.

He will also be remembered for becoming the third City player to don the goalkeeper's jersey in that famous FA Cup clash with Shrewsbury Town in March 1982 when, after Mark Wallington was forced off and his stand-in, striker Alan Young, was also injured Lynex stepped in between the posts while Young recovered.

Lynex, who lives in Wednesbury and now works for an exhibition company in Birmingham, said his five-and-a-half years with City were among the most memorable and enjoyable of his career.

"I had loads of great memories at City," he said.

"Obviously the Shrewsbury game was a memorable moment, when I had to go in goal, but we had promotions and relegations. It was a rollercoaster ride, but an enjoyable one.

"Jock Wallace signed me. It took me a time to settle to be honest because they were all Scots and I couldn't understand what they were on about.

"I am Brummie so they kept saying they couldn't understand me, but there was more of them than me.

"We played some great football in those days and it was very good for me as a winger.

"We had Gary Lineker coming through at the time and it was obvious that he would go on to become a top striker.

"He had the confidence and when he missed a few his head never went down, he was always there for the next one.

"You have to give him credit for that because a lot of guys would disappear.

"I enjoyed myself when I was there and I was just one of the lucky ones to be able to play at such a good time.

"The one year. myself, Gary and Alan Smith finished as the top-scoring forwards in the First Division.

"Looking back at the stats, I got 60 goals in 240-odd appearances. For a winger that weren't bad."

Lynex became a fans' favourite at City and he said the club was very welcoming, but he admits they missed a great opportunity to cement themselves as a First Division club and his time at Filbert Street turned sour when Brian Hamilton took over as manager.

"The City fans were fantastic to me, absolutely great," recalls Lynex, now 55.

"They were brilliant when I first signed for the club and as time went on they just got better and better.

"We had a good side. I think we had the potential to really cement ourselves in the First Division. The year we went down I thought we were unlucky and the next year when we came back up we more than held our own.

"We gave the big boys some tough games and we were hard to beat. We had some great games, like the 3-3 draw with Liverpool at home and going away to Arsenal.

"They were good days but it all turned sour for me when Brian Hamilton took charge and I had to move on."

Lynex returned to West Brom in 1987 before moving on to Cardiff and into non-league football before hanging up his boots, but he still recalls his City days fondly.

"We had a great team spirit and the way we attacked people," he added.

"The managers we had (Jock Wallace and then Gordon Milne) didn't want to sit back when we were winning, it was a case of keeping going.

"We made it hard for the opposition because we were going forward all the time.

"For a winger that was fantastic and made it so enjoyable," said Lynex.

Leicester City 'could have been one of top sides'

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