sport news Scott Arfield can be the driving force in Rangers' title bid, claims Lee Clark

When Scott Arfield left Burnley for Rangers last summer, he did so in the knowledge that the last highly-rated midfielder to make the journey from Turf Moor to Ibrox ended up beating a hasty retreat.

Joey Barton may have fallen far short in his Old Firm battle with Scott Brown but those who know Arfield best were never in doubt he would prove to be a smash hit in Glasgow.

In 2010, Lee Clark shelled out £400,000 to take the then up-and-coming young talent from Falkirk to Huddersfield.

Scott Arfield was a standout player for Rangers as they beat Celtic on Saturday

Scott Arfield was a standout player for Rangers as they beat Celtic on Saturday

Arfield duly repaid that faith, proving a pivotal part of a team that set a new Football League record of 43 games unbeaten -beating the previous record set by Brian Clough's Nottingham Forest in 1979.

And after watching his former protege then mature into a proven Premier League performer with Burnley, the former Kilmarnock boss knew the 30-year-old would be in his element in the Old Firm cauldron.

Last Saturday, Clark was an avid viewer as Arfield ruthlessly went head-to-head with Brown as they contested an eye-watering drop-ball situation that later went viral online.

Overall in the midfield battleground, Arfield proved one of the standout players in a blue jersey, as Brown and Co were emphatically overrun in the 1-0 victory for the Ibrox club.

And should Rangers now go on to mount a real title challenge in 2019, Clark expects all-action Arfield to be at the beating heart of it all.

'I watched the Old Firm game at the weekend and Scott Arfield was just unbelievable,' Clark told Sportsmail.

'But when I saw that Rangers had landed Scott last summer I always knew he would be a great signing.

'His fitness levels have always been exceptional - one of the best I have ever encountered in my career.

He ruthlessly went head-to-head with Celtic captain Scott Brown in the middle of the park

He ruthlessly went head-to-head with Celtic captain Scott Brown in the middle of the park

'The amount of ground he covers is great. He has clearly matured over the years and he has become a lot more confident in his ability.

'He is having a huge effect on games for Rangers and, for me, he was one of the main men when Rangers beat Celtic at the weekend.

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'Listen, Scott Brown has been there, seen it and done it over the years in his career.

'Don't underestimate what a player Scott Brown still is. I saw that at close quarters when I came up to Scotland as the manager of Kilmarnock.

'But Steven Gerrard has come into Rangers and he's doing a brilliant job, bringing in key players like Scott Arfield.

'Scott has helped give the Rangers team impetus, energy and quality. It was a fully deserved victory for Rangers on Saturday with Scott playing a central part in that.

'Can Rangers now mount a title challenge? Listen, they are neck and neck with Celtic, so why not? And Scott will have

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