'Raised the bar' - Exclusive: McLeish in awe of Rangers 31y/o who 'stepped up' v Gala
We’re delighted to welcome former Rangers manager Alex McLeish as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Ibrox…
Former Gers boss Alex McLeish has heaped praise on Scott Arfield’s performance as Rangers defeated Galatasaray to claim a spot in the Europa League group stage.
Speaking exclusively to Ibrox News, McLeish said Arfield has “stepped up” and has spoken of the “maturity” the Gers showed in their victory over the Turkish side.
Rangers won 2-1 when the sides met at Ibrox on Thursday night, with Arfield and James Tavernier scoring the all-important goals that saw Rangers progress.
Speaking exclusively to Ibrox News, McLeish said: “Arfield has really stepped up, he’s seen the new guys coming in and he’s gone ‘woah, I might be out of this team’.
“And he’s raised the bar, his performance last night [V Galatasaray] was again terrific.
“It’s a big scalp, Galatasaray were content, there was a spell towards the end of the first half and then obviously the second half when they got the goal.
“The goal didn’t spook Rangers. I thought that they [Rangers] responded well, when they lost that goal they showed a maturity that perhaps they’re gaining through the experience of playing in these types of games, and that’s got to be good.
“Because Steven Gerrard has emphasised the importance of Europe. It was a great performance, I really enjoyed it.”
Arfield took his first goal very well, latching onto the end of a clever pass from Ianis Hagi to fire past Ozturk in the Galatasaray net with the outside of his foot.
This was the Canadian international’s third goal of the season in all competitions, following strikes against Dundee and Hibernian in the Scottish Premiership, and McLeish says that the new arrivals at Ibrox this summer may have been the inspiration behind his recent form.
In other Rangers news, Report: Former PL legend wants to sign key Rangers star – but there is one hitch.