Celtic star Efe Ambrose keeps playing to galleries after swapping World Cup crowd of 68,000 for 1500 fans in Iceland

Efe AMBROSE saw one dream die before a crowd of 68,000 while another was one was reborn in front of just 1500 paying punters.

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Tickety-boo...Efe Ambrose helps promote Celtic's season ticket offer for the coming campaign
Tickety-boo...Efe Ambrose helps promote Celtic's season ticket offer for the coming campaign

The defender's World Cup exerience in Brazil came crashing down when Nigerian suffered a last-16 defeat to France in the Estadio Nacional in Brasilia, a match watched by 67,882 fans.

Contrast that with Tuesday night when a paltry crowd saw Celtic take their first, tentative steps on the path in this season's Champions League with a 1-0 victory over KR Raykavic.

But for Ambrose, it all adds up to the same thing...another game and another game to try and win.

After only a fortnight's break and only a couple of training sessions under new Celtic boss Ronny Deila, the 25-year-old was pitched into the first-leg of the Hoops' Champions qualifier on Tuesday night.

Debutant Callum McGregor's late strike looks to have made next week's return game at Murrayfield stadium in Edinburgh a mere formality.

However, Ambrose, speaking at the club's Lennoxtown training complex, stressed the importance of focusing on the task in hand as he compared the difference in standards over his last two games.

"It was difficult, but at the same time you have to respect everyone you play against in football these days," he said.

"You have to give your opponent due respect because there are no minor teams or minor countries in football these days, you can get beaten when you are not prepared.

"It would have been a story if we had got beaten. So it doesn't matter who we play against, the most important thing is to go out and play as a Celtic player and to win every game we play. That is the mentality."

Ambrose is noted for his stamina and has no concerns about having had only a few weeks off before starting what is sure to be another exhausting campaign.The former FC Ashdod player, who moved to Parkhead in 2012, said: "I am a professional and I am used to it.

"It has been part of me. I am always ready to go. I just love playing football."

Ambrose has been impressed with Deila, even if their relationship is only in its infancy.

He said: "I have only been back a couple of days but the atmosphere is nice.

"I think everyone is settling in well but we need time to adjust to how he wants us to play.

"It will be a gradual process. We will co-operate, to give him all we can, so we can move faster because the Champions League is ready and the league is starting soon."

Football

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