One to Watch - Darren Ambrose
Fans' favourite Darren Ambrose has been identified by Vital QPR as the One to Watch as QPR welcome Crystal Palace to Loftus Road on Saturday for a second London derby in five days.
Name: Darren Ambrose
Date of Birth: 29/02/1984
Former Clubs: Ipswich Town, Newcastle United, Charlton Athletic
Appearances (Goals): 254 (47)
Darren Ambrose could have turned out in the Blue and White Hoops of QPR on Saturday after the famous summer transfer saga between the two clubs. However, he opted to stay at Selhurst Park and will be determined to prove his worth against former manager Neil Warnock. With Crystal Palace currently embroiled in a tough relegation battle, the midfielder will certainly be looking to put in a big performance to help Palace take away maximum points.
Ambrose started his early career at Ipswich Town, making his first team debut at the age of just 18 against Arsenal. He came to prominence following Ipswich`s relegation from the Premier League the next season, where he scored 8 goals in 29 league appearances and formed a superb relationship with striker Darren Bent. However, later that season Ipswich fell into administration and Ambrose was sold to Newcastle for what was considered a bargain £1 million.
His tenure on Tyneside would see him score 5 goals in 37 games and play under the stewardship of Graeme Souness and Sir Bobby Robson. Despite putting in some impressive displays, he failed to hold down a regular first team spot and soon spoke of his desire to play regular first team football. He eventually joined Alan Curbishley at Charlton Athletic in 2005.
In his first season he scored 3 goals as the Addicks finished 13th in the league, however the following season he played under 3 different managers which ultimately led to Charlton`s relegation from the top flight. The following season Ambrose managed to net 9 goals in 42 appearances, however couldn`t help the club to promotion. Due to financial difficulties at The Valley, Ambrose made a short loan switch to former club Ipswich Town where he made 9 appearances.
A permanent move failed to materialise, and at the end of the season he joined Crystal Palace on a free. Under Neil Warnock, Ambrose blossomed as a player and managed a career-best record of 12 goals in 20 games by November. Palace unfortunately fell into administration and the goals soon dried up and with Warnock joining the Rs there was much speculation as to whether Ambrose would join Neil in W12.
After a summer of rumours and gossip, Ambrose finally decided to stay at Palace and signed a new deal that would keep him at the club until 2013. Possessing a superb dead ball delivery, and a knack for scoring handy goals, the Rs players will have to bounce back from their disappointing defeat against Millwall and keep a hungry Ambrose quiet.