Neil Lennon admits AWOL Hibs defender Efe Ambrose is in trouble

Efe Ambrose has failed to turn up for pre-season training. Pic: TSPL
Efe Ambrose has failed to turn up for pre-season training. Pic: TSPL
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Hibs boss Neil Lennon has admitted Nigerian internationalist Efe Ambrose is in trouble after going AWOL.

The 28-year-old has failed to report back for pre-season training and Lennon revealed he’s been unable to get in touch with the former Celtic defender, who signed a two year deal with the Capital club after impressing on loan last season.

Ambrose has missed all of Hibs’ pre-season matches, the Easter Road men wrapping up their three-game programme with a 2-0 win over Berwick Rangers at Shielfield Park with second-half goals from Danny Handling and Oli Shaw.

Afterwards Lennon made clear his disappointment with Ambrose, saying: “There’s no sign of Efe – so he is in a bit of trouble with the manager now. I can’t get a hold of him at all.

“He was given a wee bit of time off, but I think he is pushing the boundaries at the minute. The sooner he is back, for his sake, the better. I expected him back a lot sooner than this and it will be getting discussed behind closed doors.

“He’s got that to look forward to when he gets back!”

Lennon confirmed that Welsh internationalist Simon Church has joined his squad at their East Mains training centre as he continues his search for a striker following the departure of Jason Cummings, top scorer in each of the last three seasons.

The 28-year-old, who has 38 caps and played for Wales at last summer’s European Championships, is a free agent after a season in Holland with Roda JC Kerkrade and knows the Scottish Premiership, having played for Aberdeen on loan from Milton Keynes Dons.

Lennon said: “Simon came in on Tuesday. He is a good player, with plenty of experience – but he is still only 28. He’s a Welsh international and has done very well.

“We are assessing his condition and fitness levels and we’ll see how he integrates with the squad. He has impressed us, but it’s a little early to say for sure what will happen.

Former Arsenal and Liverpool winger Jermaine Pennant made a third appearance as a trialist against Berwick and now Lennon intends to sit down and discuss the future with the 34-year-old

He said: “Jermaine has impressed. I’ve been very pleased with him. Again, we’ll have a discussion on him in the next couple of days.”