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JOHANSEN BACKS AMBROSE

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STEFAN JOHANSEN has added his support to Efe Ambrose after his latest blunder.
The Celtic midfielder backed the Nigerian defender despite his lapse in the 2-2 draw with Fenerbahce on Thursday evening.
Ambrose apologised to his team-mates in the dressing-room after the game – and it is not the first time that he has had to hold up his hand.

Johansen said: “The supporters can say anything, but we will stay behind every player in this team.

“I thought Efe had a good game, except for a mistake. It is not just his fault that we lost these two points. I thought we looked a bit afraid after they scored their second goal.

“So, no-one can blame Efe. He is a fantastic player and he is a great person, as well.

“Okay, maybe the supporters think something else when these kinds of things happen, but his team-mates will always back him.

“What happens in the dressing-room stays in the dressing-room – that’s how it is. But, of course, he was disappointed – it’s a ball he should have headed to Craig Gordon and he missed it. But that is what happens sometimes.

“Of course, it is disappointing. We felt we had control of the game before we gave away two goals.

“Efe had a bad header back and they have scored – that is what happens against quality players.”

The Norwegian has also insisted that there is not a mental problem with Celtic being able to hold a lead, particularly in Europe.

The Hoops threw away a 2-0 advantage over Malmo in the Champions League play-off at Celtic Park while domestically they have also lost leads in games against the likes of Kilmarnock and Aberdeen.

Johansen said: “I don’t think we struggled to be mentally strong. If you play for Celtic, from day one you have to be mentally strong.

“That’s a thing I have learned and I think a lot of the foreign players have, as well. They know what is expected at the club and what the fans expect.

“You need to win here. That’s what the fans expect and to do that you need to be strong mentally. I think we are.”

Johansen maybe should acknowledge the encouragement Efe Ambrose received from the supporters on Thursday evening immediately after his error. It is extremely unfair to suggest the support got on Efe’s back due to his blunder – at the game they did not.
 
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