Livingston announce signing of defender Efe Ambrose

The Nigerian defender has signed an 18-month deal with Gary Holt's side.

Livingston have signed Efe Ambrose on a deal until the summer of 2021.

The 31-year-old defender was available as a free agent, allowing him to sign outside the transfer window.

Livingston become Ambrose’s third Scottish club after spells at Celtic and Hibs.

The Nigerian moved to Celtic Park from FC Ashdod in 2012 and won four league titles, a League Cup and a Scottish Cup during his time in Glasgow.

Ambrose had a loan spell at Hibs that led to a permanent deal. He exercised a contract clause to leave last January and later signed for Frank Lampard’s Derby County but didn’t play in the Championship and was released in June.

Ambrose said: “Marvin Bartley told me it was a great club and a great move for him and he said so many nice things about the club that I was really interested.

“I watched the Scottish league a lot back in Africa and I told Marvin I wanted to move back to Scotland and could he help out. He spoke to the coaches and said they were interested.

“I never thought they would be interested because I hadn’t played for six months. I have been training morning and evening back at home with my local team and they trusted me with that. I am not coming in for a pre-season, I am ready to go.

“Unfortunately I could not come in January because of paperwork. My agent tried to do everything possible but they couldn’t get it done and I thought I had missed out when they signed another centre-back.

“I thought it was another door shut and I was frustrated. I kept calling Marvin and he told me not to worry and I kept believing and praying. Last week everything turned round.

“Even a day without football is not OK. I have the passion and drive to play football. I have been playing in Africa but I want to be playing in a competitive league.

“I had another couple of offers but nothing concrete. So it was difficult, just hoping.

“Then Livingston came in. I have watched them play and have seen the ambition of the club.

“This is an opportunity for me to come back to the league and see what I can do to help Livingston do what they want to achieve this season – which is the top six and after that fight for the European spots.

“Nothing is impossible in football. I always believe you can achieve anything you put your mind to, and I believe this club has that mindset too.”

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