Newcastle United's 30 greatest players - Number 28

Newcastle Utd - Gate

We continue our countdown of the greatest players to have pulled on the Magpies shirt.

After the late Pavel Srnicek at number 29, our countdown of the greatest Newcastle United players continues with a former midfielder whose best days were unquestionably at St. James' Park.

After breaking through as a youngster at hometown club Ipswich Town, Kieron Dyer was signed by Ruud Gullit for £6 million in 1999 and began his career by netting the Magpies' consolation in a 2-1 defeat against rivals Sunderland in just his fifth match on Tyneside.

He slotted straight into the side, playing 39 times in all competitions in his debut season with the club and earning his first senior England caps off the back of some impressive performances.

However, it was under Gullit's successor Sir Bobby Robson that he really blossomed, becoming an integral part of the former England manager's side that finished in the Premier League's top five three seasons in a row in the early 2000s.

During that period, he looked like he might become the complete central midfielder; full of attacking enterprise, with a wide range of passing, and the ability to both beat a man and chip in with a handful of important goals each season.

However, it was in April 2005, at the back end of a season in which he had registered his best league goals tally for four years, that the most notorious moment of his career occurred when he was sent off, along with Lee Bowyer, for fighting his midfield teammate in the middle of a 3-0 home defeat to Aston Villa.

The following season his participation was hampered by niggling injuries - he made just 13 appearances in all competitions - and though he enjoyed a return to form in 2006-07, that was to be his final season on Tyneside before being sold West Ham.

Injuries ruined his post-Newcastle career; he would play just 51 competitive matches for three different clubs over the next six seasons, also failing to add to the 33 England caps his accumulated in his time in the North East, before eventually resigning himself to retirement in 2013.

Overall though, and in spite of his latter-year injury problems, it is unfair that Dyer be remembered primarily for the shameful scrap with Bowyer - in his pomp, he was perhaps one of the more enterprising midfielders to have worn the Newcastle shirt in recent years.

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