Darren Ambrose desperate to stay at Ipswich Town after falling back in love with football

Darren Ambrose

Darren Ambrose - Credit: Su Anderson

Darren Ambrose says he has fallen back in love with football since being reunited with his boyhood club Ipswich Town.

The 30-year-old scored a fine headed opener in Sunday’s FA Cup third round 1-1 draw at high-flying Premier League side Southampton. It was the first start of his third spell with the Blues and his first goal for the club since he netted in a 3-2 home win over Sheffield United, aged 18, in 2003.

You could see the emotion in his 50-yard dash to the bench in order to celebrate with manager Mick McCarthy and assistant Terry Connor, the former Newcastle, Charlton, and Crystal Palace midfielder having endured a frustrating last few years at Birmingham and Greek side Apollon Smyrni.

“I’m delighted,” said the beaming Essex-born player, a Playford Road academy graduate who had a brief loan spell back at Town in 2008/09. “It’s been a difficult few years not playing, but I’ve got the love back now with this team and with this manager. It’s changed my opinion of football and now I love it again.

“I’m just looking forward to hopefully being a part of the next few games.”

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Having returned to Suffolk in September, Ambrose’s short-term deal expires in the next few days. McCarthy indicated last week that he would be offering the experienced player an extension.

“He’s called me in and asked me my thoughts and what I wanted,” revealed Ambrose. “It was a brief discussion about what my plans were. I just told him that I’m so happy here. It’s a difficult one because I haven’t played as much as I’d hoped, but the team is doing fantastic so I’m not going to be throwing my arms up in the air and moaning.

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“Hopefully, when I get my chance, like today, I can contribute. If in the next few games I get another opportunity, hopefully I can contribute again.

“I want to stay – 100%. There’s nowhere else I’m looking. We’ll see in the next few days and weeks whether we can get something sorted.

“It’s been a hard few years for me, but I’m glad to be back and enjoying myself.”

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