The Tampa Bay Rowdies today announced the signing of forward Mike Ambersley to a new three-year contract through the 2014 season.
The 29-year old native of St. Louis, Missouri was named to the North American Soccer League Best XI last season after leading Tampa Bay with 11 goals, tied for third-best in the league. Ambersley ranked third in the NASL and first on the team with seven assists while also leading the club in both points (29) and minutes played (2,275).
“Mike has proven to be one of the most dangerous goal scorers in our league and his consistent work rate and awareness on the field also create scoring chances for his teammates,” said Rowdies President/General Manager Andrew Nestor. “He is part of a strong core of leaders for this team on and off the field.”
"It is a relief to get this contract done and now I can purely focus on the soccer part of things," said Ambersley. “It is a great organization, from the front office to my teammates to the fans. Those are three very important things you look for when you want to stay at a club for a long time, and I think Tampa has everything that my fiancé and I wanted. We are excited to be able to call this place home for quite awhile.”
Ambersley was named NASL Player of the Month for August 2011 after totaling three goals and three assists during that month, and garnered Offensive Player of the Week honors on June 13, 2011.
In his first season with the club in 2011, Ambersley tied for the team lead in both matches played with 27 and games started with 25. Led by his 11 goals, Tampa Bay ranked tied for second in the league with 41 goals a year ago. Prior to joining the Rowdies, Ambersley scored nine goals in 23 appearances in the 2010 season for AC St. Louis.
The Rowdies open the 2012 season on the road at Puerto Rico on Saturday, April 7 before hosting FC Edmonton in the home opener on Saturday, April 14 at 7:30 p.m. at Al Lang Stadium. The Rowdies will start their preseason training camp on March 1. For ticket information for the 2012 season, call 813-287-1539.