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Celtic return for Ambrose as Blackburn move collapses

Defender's proposed loan to Rovers falls through due to work permit issues.

Efe Ambrose: The defender is back in training at Lennoxtown.
Efe Ambrose: The defender is back in training at Lennoxtown. SNS Group

Efe Ambrose is back in training with Celtic after his loan move to Blackburn Rovers collapsed.

The Nigerian defender agreed a loan move until the end of the season at the close of the January transfer window but the switch was not finalised as he tried to sort out issues with his work permit.

Those issues have not been resolved and Ambrose has been forced to return to Glasgow.

Brendan Rodgers confirmed the breakdown of the move and said he had sympathy for a player who had been prepared to move to play regular football after being surplus to requirements while Celtic are in unstoppable form in domestic football.

"I think it was work permit issues with Efe," Rodgers said. "It's unfortunate because he was looking forward to going and getting some game time.

"Unfortunately it didn't work out that way so he's back here and in training. It's very difficult. Efe's one of the nicest guys you'll ever come across.

"I've not known so many players who, when they're not playing or not even featuring, knock on my door so many times and tell me how much they're enjoying it. 

"Telling me how much he's enjoying the training and how much he feels he's getting better in training."

Rodgers added: "You don't normally get that nowadays but he's one of the nicest guys in the world, which is why I always want the best for him and his family. 

"If he's not going to be here at Celtic we want to prepare him for the next opportunity."

The Hoops boss conceded it was unlikely the defender would force his way into the first team in the remaining months of the season.

"I think he's pretty realistic knowing that his chances here are limited but it'll maybe give him a bit of time now to look at something for the summer," he said.

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