SCOTT Arfield says the Rangers players should be proud of the performance they put in against Aberdeen after being reduced to 10 men after just 12 minutes.
The decision to send Alfredo Morelos off left the Gers with a task on their hands and Arfield believed they showed true character to control the majority of the game until a sucker punch equaliser from the Dons in stoppage time.
The midfielder, who moved from Premier League Burnley in the summer, was back in the starting line-up, for the first game of the Premiership campaign, after injury. He made up a three alongside Ryan Jack and Lousanna Coulibaly.
Speaking to RangersTV the 29-year-old said: “It does feel a little hard done by, I don’t know if it should but with ten men and the circumstances of losing a goal in the 91 minute it is understandable.
“You want to win every game and I think we did enough to win and I think there was only one team who was going to go on and score the second goal, it was us. It is a tough one to take but we should be incredibly proud of today.
“It took us five minutes after the sending off to find our feet and bring Murph and Josh a wee bit in, keep the midfield three and keep the back five as intact.
“We have never really worked on going down to ten men but I think we coped with it incredibly well.
“I think it is testament to our character, I think the Rangers team last season or the season before, certainly wouldn’t have got the result here, they would have crumbled mentally.
“This group of players are so different and I think the reaction of going a man down and feeling hard done by but then going and getting a goal, epitomises that.
“The first 12 minutes when we had a eleven men I think we were picking it up in the pockets, Josh, Alfredo and Murph were coming into nice wee pockets with the midfield three.
“I think we were hooking up well and then it had to be a different way to go and get a result.
“If we win that game then everybody says what a good team this is. I think we should still be saying that because what a shift the boys put in. It is now onto Maribor on Thursday.”
The call to dismiss Morelos was followed by more controversy when the Gers were awarded a penalty on the half hour mark.
Former Ger Dom Ball brought Josh Windass down, before James Tavernier slotted the spot-kick away, but Ball avoided punishment for the tackle.
Arfield continued: “I thought the sending off was harsh, I have seen it again, he gives the referee a decision to make and he has made the decision to give a red. If it was the other way I am not sure if it is a red card for anybody else.
“There is a decision to make for the penalty, it is red card, is it a yellow card so everything seemed to go against us.”