Steven Gerrard has effectively confirmed Scott Arfield is back in the starting XI to stay, following the Canadian international’s wonderful form since being restored a few matches ago.
The former Falkirk man was naturally upset to lose his place this season, but responded in absolutely the right way, by getting his head down and working harder, and he’s been rewarded with a return to the XI and some of the best form he’s shown since arriving north from Burnley two seasons ago.
Gerrard admitted he’s been the best and most consistent player in the side the past few matches, which is as ringing an endorsement as it gets, albeit Stevie did say this about Arfield during a similar spell of outstanding play last season too.
Arfield is a player this manager has colossal admiration for – and he tested him mentally by installing Aribo and Hagi in the slots Arfield might have expected to hold.
But while the midfielder benefited from Aribo’s injury, Hagi simply hasn’t quite delivered enough to retain his place, and Arfield has absolutely seized that chance.
And going by his manager’s words, it will take a hell of a lot to shift him now.
Rangers are definitely a better team when Arfield plays – this site is on record as preaching that multiple times over the years.
And it’s clear the new system is benefiting his natural attacking instincts while also allowing him to play deep enough to link midfield to the front.
Ibrox Noise’s Derek discussed how Kemar Roofe’s presence in the side creates noise between midfield and attack, and that is also true – but with Arfield there, a different kind of cohesion is there and Rangers are no poorer for it.
He’s here to stay.