Ambrose Couldn't Turn Down Newcastle Move
Friday, 12th Sep 2014 06:00
Darren Ambrose has revealed he put Town first when he opted to join Newcastle in a £1 million move soon after his 19th birthday.
With the club in financial crisis, having been plunged into administration, he felt he had no choice but to make the switch to the north east.
Casting his mind back more than 11 years Ambrose, pictured above playing for Newcastle in the Dale Roberts testimonial at Portman Road in 2004, recalled: “In hindsight I think I maybe left a little bit too soon but when a team like Newcastle and a manager like Bobby Robson comes calling you can’t really say no.
“The club was in a bad way and we all knew what was going on. We had a lot of meetings about the way the club was going and the administrators were in at the time. It was a weird situation.
“At the time Joe Royle rang me up and said ‘I really don’t want you to go but you kind of have to really’. Whether I wanted to go or not it was one of those situations where I wanted to do what was best for the club.
“It was very frustrating for me as a kid. I thought I would come back on loan straight away but I didn’t, although I ended up having a good time at Newcastle. For the first 18 months it was fantastic for me.
“I’m not going to look back with regrets – you can’t do that in football. You have to push forward and that’s what I’m doing now. I look round the place and I’m pleased that the club’s where it is now. It’s got a fantastic owner and a good manager, good squad and good staff.
“Whether I left too soon is a question I’ve asked myself all the time. But I don’t have regrets and I’ve enjoyed my career so far. I enjoyed coming back here on loan a few years ago – I was really pleased with that move – and I’m determined to enjoy every moment now.”
Ambrose, back with the Blues on a short-term deal, is one of the club’s most successful graduates and he added: “This club is renowned for its academy and it was no different back then.
“There are a fair few players who have made it and I absolutely loved it. I grew up here from 15 onwards, stayed in digs as you do when you’re in the youth team and then broke into the first team under George Burley quite early.
“Now I’m back and I’ve talked about unfinished business. When I came back on loan I wanted to stay. There was talk of me signing a deal but I was in and out of the team so it didn’t go too well for me.
“But I went on to have a fantastic season at Crystal Palace. You have your ups and downs, you have managers who want you and others who don’t, but this manager [Mick McCarthy] has been fantastic since I’ve come in.
“He’s helped me along the way and he’s been open with me. He tells me what he wants me to do and hopefully I can repay that faith with some good performances.”
Photo: Action Images
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