The Queens Park Rangers striker knows he has a battle on his hands to secure a starting spot in the side when Scotland kick-off their Euro 2020 campaign two weeks today against Czech Republic.
Che Adams’ impressive start to his international career means Dykes is under pressure although the pair did start up front together in Scotland’s last outing against the Faroe Islands.
Dykes contacted Neil McCann, who now works for the management company looking after the striker, to ask if he would put him through some drills after the end of the Championship season in England.
After six goals in his last eight games for QPR, Dykes wanted to maintain his fitness levels and hit the ground running with Scotland.
McCann was still in the process of clearing his desk at Inverness Caledonian Thistle after a successful temporary stint as manager. The former winger stepped into the role after John Robertson was given compassionate leave and brought in Billy Dodds, his former Dundee, Rangers and Scotland teammate, as his assistant.
As far as Dykes was concerned, this was a ready-made specialist coaching team so he headed to the Highlands from London as soon as he could.
“I had a couple of weeks off as I’d finished a bit earlier in the Championship,” explained Dykes. “Neil McCann started working with my agency, so I went up there for a week and trained with Neil, Billy Dodds and Barry Wilson. It was really good just to get their experience.”
Dykes was given striker coaching from Dodds, while McCann and Wilson, another former winger who is now on the coaching staff at Inverness, provided the benefit of their experience as attackers.
"Billy Dodds was a striker and I tried to take on as much as I could,” he said. “Neil and Barry were great players as wingers and a lot of it was in an attacking sense, with a bit of fitness as well.
“I think they’ll take a lot of credit if I score!” added Dykes. “We spoke about their careers, stories about what they’ve done and what they’ve been watching in myself.
“It was good to recharge and get away from everyone and make sure I was focused on football.”
Dykes is excited to be teaming up with Southampton striker Adams even though it gives him a challenge if manager Steve Clarke decides to play with just one striker, as seems likely.
“He’s a great player to come in,” said Dykes. “We played as a two in the last game we played together. I really enjoyed it. He’s brought a lot of Premier League experience in the striking department to the team.“It’s something I can feed off,” he added. “I like playing in a two as well. He’s a great player. Everyone is fighting for their positions. I’m fighting as well. He’s a great addition to the squad because the squad is very good right now.“We’ve got a lot of versatility,” he added. “If we need to change it at any time, then we can change it because of the players we have.”