He may have fallen out with George Burley, but Kris Boyd will take the Scotland manager's advice and do all he can to become a Rangers regular.
Burley suggested Boyd should look at why he was not one of the first names on the team sheet at Ibrox before complaining about the lack of opportunity which led to him quitting international football. That was followed by Rangers manager Walter Smith suggesting Boyd needed to do more to win him over, describing the 25-year-old as the "biggest enigma" he had encountered as a manager.
With the club now his sole focus, Boyd is determined to prove he is worth a starting berth and is hoping to be given a chance to do just that in Saturday's Scottish Premier League trip to Hamilton. "The last couple of weeks have been tough but my decision has been made with regards to Scotland and all I want to do is keep my head down and work hard so that I can get back into the Rangers team," he said.
"Obviously, I have not been involved as much as I would have liked recently but it's up to me to change that by showing the manager how hungry I am day in, day out, in training and in games. He has to pick the team and if I am not part of that, it means I have to work harder and take my chance when it comes along. It's frustrating when you are sitting on the bench, any footballer will say that, but I am always confident I can score and hopefully I can do that this weekend against Hamilton." Boyd believes striking up an understanding with summer signing Kenny Miller – who is a favourite of both Smith and Burley – will aid his quest. "I think I can definitely play alongside Kenny, I have no doubt about that," Boyd said.
"We have shown already this season that we can work well together as we both have different attributes. If we get the chance against Hamilton this weekend, I am sure we can show that again. It's down to the gaffer but I just want the chance to show him what I can do. I don't mind who I am playing with as long as I am on the pitch."
Boyd reckons the impending return of captain Barry Ferguson and Chris Burke bodes well for the club's hunt for silverware. He said: "On top of the boys that are fit right now, Barry is expected to make a return this week, which will give everyone a massive boost. Chris Burke is also fit and ready to play again so the gaffer has a lot of options for the games coming up. It may be a problem trying to fit everyone in but I am sure that's a problem he is delighted to have."
Miller and Kevin Thomson are expected to be fit for Saturday's game at New Douglas Park. Both were forced to pull out of the Scotland squad for the goalless World Cup qualifier against Norway the weekend before last. Miller needed an injection on a long-standing hamstring strain, while Thomson suffered an ankle injury in the shock SPL defeat at St Mirren on 5 October. Smith said: "I think both Kevin and Kenny will be fine for Saturday. Kevin has an ankle injury which was a bit swollen and it took a bit to settle. He only trained towards the end of last week, but the extra time will mean he is fully fit.
"Kenny had the injection in his hamstring and that required a period where he couldn't train, but he came back last week and there has been no problem with it." Smith has already said Saturday's match will probably come too soon for captain Barry Ferguson, who played his first match in five months on Tuesday when the reserves beat St Mirren at Love Street. Striker Kyle Lafferty had also been struggling with injury but could come into contention against Hamilton after impressing his manager with his recent play for Northern Ireland.Reuse content