St Johnstone manager Callum Davidson has identified the signing of Efe Ambrose as being an important one for his defensive options and has helped “reassure” his back line.
Ambrose moved to McDiarmid Park in early September as a free agent, having left Livingston in the summer. Davidson saw him as an ideal recruit after having sold Jason Kerr to Wigan Athletic.
Since then, Ambrose has played four times for his new club and the Nigerian has been on the winning side in three.
Davidson feels the experience of the 33-year-old former Celtic, Hibernian and Livingston is invaluable but he can also profit from his versatility.
He said: “Efe’s been a great signing for us, especially with Liam Gordon out, Jason Kerr away and losing Jamie McCart for the last game against Dundee.
“We’ve needed that wee bit of experience and Efe’s reassured us and calmed us down. He’s a good player and he’s fitted in really well. He can play on the right side of the back three as well as the middle.
“I’m really pleased with Efe. It was a real bonus to get him when we did.”
Consistency of selection, particularly in the back line, was a major part of St Johnstone’s success under Davidson last season but he was happy to see that the team was able to thrive with different personnel.
“If you look back at the Rangers game, we had a back three of Hayden Muller, James Brown and Jamie McCart and they played really well that day,” he said. “Then in the last game (at home to Dundee) it was a totally different back three of Shaun Rooney, Lars Dendoncker and Efe.
“That was one of the most pleasing things about that game, that it showed I’ve got options. Last year if you told me I was going to lose my whole back three, I don’t think I’d have had many replacements there. It’s really good that we’ve got all these players at the club pushing for places.”