I’ll make critics eat their words: Kyle Lafferty
Kyle Lafferty is on a mission to prove he deserves to wear the famous Rangers jersey.
It promises to be a make or break season at Ibrox coming up for the Northern Ireland striker who has been lambasted by critics since moving to Ibrox.
Lafferty will get the chance to shine up front for the Gers following the departures of Kris Boyd and Nacho Novo and the 22-year-old knows he must grasp the opportunity with both hands.
The Fermanagh man must cement his place in Walter Smith’s side and steer clear of controversy which has dogged his spell in Scotland.
In recent times the spotlight has been on the big frontman for the wrong reasons — his ‘feigned injury’ incident with Charlie Mulgrew provoked outrage and he also had a well publicised bust-up with his skipper David Weir.
The former Burnley hitman is looking forward to shutting up his detractors.
“It’s all down to me now to keep proving my critics wrong,” said Lafferty. “I have to show the club and the fans that I was worth investing in.
“I want to make them eat their words — I’ve got all of my team-mates behind me and I just have to show that that faith is well placed.
“A lot of things have been said to me and about me before but the only people I’m listening to now are the ones who talk sense.
“My own team-mates and my
coaches are the ones I’m paying attention to as they’re the ones who will keep me right.
“I just have to concentrate on those who matter.”
Lafferty has always felt more comfortable as a striker than a winger and now he’s planning to bang in the goals from the middle.
“I came to Rangers as a striker and everyone knows I want to express myself up front,” he added.
“I feel that I have played my best games there. I know many people have been doubting me but I know I can do the job and I have to keep doing it.
“There are going to be a few op
portunities for me to impress up front and hopefully I can do that.”
Meanwhile, former Rangers starlet Danny Wilson completed his three-year deal with Liverpool yesterday after the defender passed his medical.
Liverpool will pay the SPL giants £2million up front with a further £3million dependent on appearances and add-ons.
“This is a massive challenge for me. This is one of the best leagues in the world and I will be playing for one of the biggest teams in the world,” said the Scottish Football Association and Football Writers’ Young Player of the Year.
“Coming here from Scotland, people may say I might not be ready for this, but that is a challenge I want to put on myself and that's the reason I came here.
“It wasn't a difficult decision to come here as Liverpool are not a team who come in for you every day, so I can't wait to get started.
“There were other clubs interested in me who are in the Champions League, but once Liverpool came in for me there was only one team I wanted to go to.”
Former Everton star Weir has backed his former team-mate Wilson to handle the pressure at Anfield.
“He has handled everything else that's been thrown in his path. He’s a good football player and a nice lad,” said Weir.
“I don't think it's rocket science, he just needs to keep doing what he’s been doing.”