IN his spell with the club, Alex Rae enjoyed and came out on top in a number of Old Firm midfield battles.
He knows what it means and what it takes to win derby matches against Celtic, therefore, he couldn’t help but be impressed by the showing of Gers’ three midfielders in the recent win over the side from the other end of town.
Each of goalscorer Ryan Jack, Scott Arfield and Ross McCrorie enjoyed superb performances, with Rae singing the praises of the trio and also being excited by what’s to follow with the addition of Steven Davis in the January transfer window to the central areas.
Speaking yesterday afternoon at Ibrox as he promoted VPZ’s National Cigarette Amnesty, he explained: “You have to win your individual battles in the middle of the park, and collectively as well. I thought they steamrolled Celtic on the day, and it hasn’t been the case in recent years.
“It was encouraging from that point of view, and then bringing in Steven Davis to that as well, and he is a class act.
“But I thought McCrorie, Jack and Arfield on the day were absolutely brilliant.
“The victory here was massive, as had they lost that, everyone would have been saying it’s the same-old.
“But they can take plenty of confidence from it and the manner in which Rangers were so impressive on the day.
“I think Steven Gerrard said it was an “A-plus” game, and it was. To a man, they were better and now they have finished the winter-break, it is about coming back refreshed and ready to go again.”
The addition of Davis, as well as striker Jermain Defoe have excited Rae, and he is now interested to see just how quickly they get up to the speed of things in the Scottish game.
He continued: “I think with Steven Davis coming in, with that bit of guile in the middle of the park, and then Jermain Defoe, who I played against when he was a young man at West Ham, he will come in and give another option up front.
“Things are ticking along nicely, and they are good additions. It’s about how well they adapt now and hit the ground running.”
Gers have also secured Jordan Jones from Kilmarnock and Glenn Kamara from Dundee, both on pre-contract agreements with a view to joining the Light Blues in the summer.
Kamara is someone who Rae has kept a close eye on, and believes he could be a fantastic addition for Gers for next season.
Rae added: “I saw him playing in Portugal in a couple of pre-season friendlies and I was really impressed. The opposition they were up against, they were technically very good, but he was the one in the Dundee team who was actually able to manipulate the ball.
“I think that’s what Steven [Gerrard] has seen in him. He is a young player from whom there is plenty more development to come.
“He will be a good addition once he gets his foot under the door here and he will learn from guys like Steven Davis and Ryan Jack.
“Once he gets familiarised with this club, he could go on to become a big asset.”