Opinions on Steven Gerrard’s success at Rangers have oscillated from one extreme to another since he arrived at Ibrox in the summer, but the legendary figurehead now finds himself on the positive end of the spectrum after Rangers recorded a 2-1 win over Hearts to move into top spot in the SPFL.
A gruelling midweek encounter against Villarreal in which the Gers were forced to play more than half the match with just ten players provided a huge challenge for the club prior to their trip to Tynecastle to face Hearts.
Hints of tiredness manifested themselves for Rangers in the early stages of proceedings and they went 1-0 down after just 27 minutes, but the opener sparked them into life and they scored two goals in quick succession courtesy of Connor Goldson and Alfredo Morelos.
Rangers have been lauded for their performance in the aftermath of proceedings, but a familiar feeling of frustration concerning ill-discipline took the gloss off the victory for what feels like the umpteenth time this season.
Indeed, just days after struggling with 10-men against Villarreal, Scott Arfield was given his marching orders in the 72 minute after lunging in on Zdenek Zlamal.
It was a moment of recklessness which Arfield, 30, really ought to know is intolerable in modern day football, and BBC Scotland pundit Colin Moffat suggested that Gerrard has every right to be fuming with the 13-cap Canada international.
‘Gerrard will surely be asking questions of Arfield, who needlessly went in with both feet on Zlamal giving the referee no option but to issue a straight red card.’
Arfield has been a key player for Rangers this season, with a return of six goals and four assists in all-competitions illuminating his importance in the final-third, and his suspension will certainly represent a huge blow for the club.
That Arfield’s red card was completely avoidable is a real sickener for both Gerrard and the Rangers supporters, and this growing problem at the club is one which could ultimately prevent them from taking Celtic down to the wire this season.
It’s a problem which Gerrard must make a priority to address and Moffat is absolutely right to suggest that he will be having stern words with Arfield in light of his rash challenge.
Rangers fans – thoughts? Let us know below!