Giovanni van Bronckhorst has emphased the ‘round pegs for round holes’ mentality which has guided Rangers so well so far, by suggesting Scott Arfield, like every other player, is allowed to play with freedom and in his own style rather than being bogged down to a system which limits him.
We recall that while the ex-boss very much saw Arfield deliver a lot and perform excellently, the 4-3-3 never properly suited him because he’s not a CM and he’s not a winger, so there was never any specific slot that was best for him under Gerrard.
But with Gio’s fluid 4-2-3-1 (more on that later) Arfield is finding himself with complete freedom and his manager is emphasising that.
Gio expressed how important it is to give players the opportunities to play in systems which fit them, a system which is built around them and their attributes, and if one player (there have been many, in truth) has benefited from the new football culture at Ibrox it’s the former Canada captain.
As we know, SG frequently put players out of position, with Arfield especially being shoehorned into slots he wasn’t comfortable with.
Despite that he still played superbly, so we can’t revise history and say he suffered.
But now he’s even better, managing to get the freedom to link midfield to attack, make runs into the box and score goals.
And that’s because of how Gio’s system works.