Why John Fleck's former Glasgow Rangers teammate is not surprised to see him flourishing in Premier League with Sheffield United amidst links with Arsenal
Kris Boyd, John Fleck's former teammate at Rangers, admits he is not surprised to see the Sheffield United star "thriving" in the Premier League this season.
Fleck has been one of United's leading lights so far this season as they have surprised the footballing world, sitting seventh in the top-flight table after promotion last season.
Many feel Fleck is finally living up to the reputation he carved out for himself at Rangers, the club he grew up supporting but left to get first-team football in England.
After spells at Blackpool and Coventry, Fleck signed for United under Chris Wilder and has not looked back. He is now a full Scottish international and has been linked with a move to Arsenal in the summer.
And Boyd, who played with Fleck at Ibrox, revealed he used to feel sorry for Fleck when the pair were at Rangers.
"When he was coming through, he was the most-talked-about youngster in Scottish football, and rightly so," Boyd said.
"But when you go back to that Rangers team, he couldn't really get into it. He couldn't really get a position that suited him because we were so strong and John was so young.
"Fair play to him because he took the chance in leaving. He didn't want to hang around a big football club and be a part of it. He wanted to go and better himself.
He went to Blackpool for a few games and then made a move to Coventry and then Sheffield United.
"Let's be honest, he hasn't looked back since. What a time to perhaps have your best season as a professional footballer.
"He has been outstanding and it doesn't come as a surprise because you have seen with John as a young kid he was a talent - he's definitely done that now and he's thriving."
Fleck could win his latest cap for Scotland in March, when Steve Clarke's men take on Israel in their Euro 2020 play-off at Hampden Park. Fleck, now aged 28, has won two senior caps for Scotland after making his long-overdue debut in a 4-0 defeat to Russia in October 2019.