IN-FORM midfielder Scott Arfield – the Premiership’s Player of the Month for April – admits he is enjoying playing closer to striker Jermain Defoe in Steven Gerrard’s team.
The 30-year-old Gers star and his gaffer, who also collected the Manager of the Month award for April at the Hummel Training Centre today, were worthy winners after Rangers produced an impressive run which has seen them win their last four league games, scoring 11 goals and conceding just one.
Arfield has been a top performer during this period as he scored in the 3-0 victory over Hearts on April 3 and then followed that by netting a stunning hat-trick in another 3-0 win, this time against Motherwell at Fir Park.
The former Burnley playmaker said: “I think over the last two years I’ve not played enough football.
I had a year-and-a-half at Burnley where I was in and out of the team, so this is the happiest I’ve been in years, being at this football club, wearing this badge and walking around here and being back in Glasgow.
“My family is settled and I’m fully focused on doing the right things for Rangers and to win games.”
On playing with Defoe, he continued: “I think it is very important when you have got a player like Jermain that you get close to him and you help him as much as possible.
“He’s a clinical finisher. He goes in behind and makes it ever so easy for the wingers and for the number eights to get up and help him because you know he is going to keep the ball.
“So when he was playing up we knew we had to get close to him and make it as tough as possible for oppositions.
“It just so happens that when he gets chances he’s ever so clinical and that’s what you get when you invest the money in a player like that to bring him up here.”
Rangers have had spells in the season where their form has dipped and nine draws and five defeats in the league have proved very costly. The recent run of wins, however, has shown what Gerrard’s men are capable of.
Arfield said: “I think consistency over the season is why we have fallen short.
“To put a finger on it is hard to do, but everybody knows how to play this system we are now playing, we are hurting teams in different ways and everybody is going in the right direction.
“So it’s took this long and I think it’s a sad thing for us that it is coming to an end so quickly with three games to go.
We want to finish as strong as possible and hit the ground running next season.”
All three meetings with Sunday’s visitors to Ibrox, Hibernian, have ended in a draw this season and Arfield admits he and his teammates have something to prove against Paul Heckingbottom’s men this weekend.
“You always have a point to prove every time you wear the badge,” said the Canadian internationalist. “Everybody’s cup final is against us, we know that, and we are there to win games.
“We are in a rich vein of form and everybody is happy in the system that we are playing. We are going after teams and we are scoring goals so we are confident we will do the same.”