JUDGEMENT Day won’t be a farewell for Dan Lydiate with the Dragons aiming to secure a deal with the Wales and Lions flanker as a player-coach.

The 36-year-old returned to the Rodney Parade club, where he came through the academy, last summer after being released by the Ospreys.

Lydiate linked up with Dai Flanagan’s squad late after being picked for the World Cup and is poised to make his tenth appearance of the campaign off the bench against the Scarlets in Saturday’s Cardiff City Stadium Judgement Day (kick-off 3pm).

However, the 95th outing for the Dragons is unlikely to be his last with a deal in the offing that will see the popular forward cut his coaching teeth with the club.

South Wales Argus: DEAL? Dragons forward Dan LydiateDEAL? Dragons forward Dan Lydiate (Image: Huw Evans Agency)

“This won’t be his last game, I can guarantee you that,” said Flanagan. “He is a player that I don’t want to leave this region for multiple reasons – playing, experience, what he can bring off the field going forward.

“It won’t be his last game of rugby, otherwise there would have been more made of that this week.”

Lydiate would have a ‘transition’ year in which he would act as extra cover for the well-stocked back row – potentially working towards a century of Dragons appearances – while also helping in the development of the young talent on the books.

With money tight, any agreement would have to represent value for the club who have released Sean Lonsdale despite flanker/lock, who has since signed for Ealing Trailfinders, being a near ever-present.

Flanagan is quick to point to the influence that Lydiate has already had on the next generation.

“He has been brilliant for us because of the intelligence he has got, with where he has been and what he has done,” said the head coach.

“For someone like Ryan Woodman to sit with him every day for the last eight months, you will see a different Ryan Woodman who can go to big places. Having Dan Lydiate next to him has been invaluable.”

South Wales Argus: MENTOR: Dan Lydiate celebrates with Dragons teammate Aneurin OwenMENTOR: Dan Lydiate celebrates with Dragons teammate Aneurin Owen (Image: Huw Evans Agency)

Lydiate combines playing with the family farming business and Flanagan believes that the flanker, who left for Racing 92 in 2013, could do the same as a coach.

“Coaching is something that Dan is curious to see what it would be like. I’ve told him how good a coach he would be,” said the Dragons boss.

“We didn’t have a defence coach all year after Simon Cross left and if we went to market then what Welsh defence coaches are out there?

“We have to start producing them in Wales and arguably there is no better defender in Welsh rugby than Dan over the last 10 years. I would pursue that if I was him.”