Lafferty ready to kick-start Ibrox career

Rangers striker Kyle Lafferty says he is ready to kick-start his Ibrox career after an injury nightmare first four months.

The Northern Ireland international has made just three starts for the club since his summer transfer from Burnley, the 21-year-old having been plagued with injury and even had his wisdom teeth removed in a bid to cure a back problem.

But as Rangers prepare for the visit of Dundee United for their rearranged Scottish Premier League clash on Tuesday Lafferty revealed he is fully fit and eager to impress the Ibrox club's fans.

And the hitman says he wants to repay manager Walter Smith's faith in him and start to justify his four million pound transfer fee.

"I had no influence on the price tag. It was between Burnley and Rangers to come up with that," Lafferty said.

"All I can do is prove to the people here I was worth the money. I'm only 21 and I'll learn a lot here.

"I can improve at Ibrox and that can only be good for me and the club. Everyone knows it has been a frustrating start for me but I'm fit now and raring to go.

"I started off well, scoring on my Ibrox debut against Hearts. But after that it went downhill.

"I missed games for Rangers and Northern Ireland but hopefully that's all behind me now.

"The physio and doctor thought my wisdom teeth were causing the problem so I had them out. But it turned out that had nothing to do with it, it was just a back injury."

Lafferty has scored on both his previous starts at Ibrox, once against Hearts in the league and the other against Hamilton in the League Cup.

And the tall striker says he has been impressed at the standard of the teams in the SPL and the quality of his teammates in the Ibrox dressing room.

"It's a massive jump coming here from Burnley, everyone knows how big Rangers are," Lafferty said.

"The SPL is a lot better than people give it credit for. There are a lot of tough teams.

"It's hard to get into this side but when you do you have to try to cement your place.

"The great thing is, whatever 11 the gaffer picks to start all want to play for the badge. Being here will make me a better player simply because I'm playing with more quality."

Ibrox manager Walter Smith has no new injury worries for the visit of Dundee United, a rearranged fixture after it was postponed following the death of Arabs chairman Eddie Thompson.

Kenny Miller and Kevin Thomson were both substituted in Saturday's 5-0 thrashing of Inverness Caledonian Thistle but they are expected to be fit for Tuesday.