As Rangers sealed the deal, does Kyle Lafferty signing prove Rangers can buy Scotland’s best?
The Ibrox side secured the signing of Hearts star Lafferty this afternoon. The Northern Irishman was comfortably Hearts’ best player over the last two years.
Rangers have been searching for a third striker for several weeks now. The arrival of Umar Sadiq on-loan hasn’t as of yet had the impact many would’ve liked. However, the acquisition of Lafferty you would expect will have more positive results.
It sorts out the frustrating saga that seems to have been going on for months. However, in the bigger picture, does it now mean Rangers can take Scotland’s best players once again?
Throughout their journey from the third division, Rangers have never had the same standing amongst rivals. The likes of Aberdeen and Hibernian wouldn’t think of doing business with them. Even Hearts seen the Ibrox side as equals during their time in the Championship, and pipped Rangers to that title in 2015.
Yet, there’s a strong appreciation now that the Gers are getting back to where they belong. This now seems to be spreading its way to signings.
The Scott Allan saga
Under Mark Warburton, Rangers were frustrated in their attempts to get Scott Allan from Hibernian. The Hibees refused to sell to a rival club, before then agreeing to let him go to Celtic for next to nothing.
It was a slap in the face to the Ibrox men at the time. Clubs didn’t treat Rangers with the same form of respect, and felt they could bully them around in transfer dealings.
However, Hearts have shown that there is an acceptance in Scotland that Rangers is a step-up. Lafferty wouldn’t want to come to Ibrox otherwise.
Rangers are getting stronger
It also shows that Rangers now have it in them to go to other Scottish clubs and take their best talent.
There’s been an authoritative way of handling transfers ever since Steven Gerrard has walked in the door. He’s brought an aura to the club, and is consistently getting the players he demands.
Even though Rangers were frustrated in pursuing Lafferty, there was always an inevitability they would get their man. There was a feeling that Hearts just couldn’t stand in the club’s way if they wanted him.
It’s a timely signal that Rangers are continuing to get stronger in more than just the football field.
Gerrard is bringing a confidence and swagger to the club again, and it looks like other Scottish sides are taking notice.