Stephen Kenny reckons that Adam Idah's loan move to Celtic from Norwich City could prove to be the making of the Republic of Ireland striker.

It was Kenny who handed the attacker his debut for his country back in August 2020. Kenny - who was formerly the player's Ireland U-21 coach - named Idah in the Republic of Ireland senior squad for the first time for the UEFA Nations League games against Bulgaria and Finland. It was Kenny's first-ever squad announcement as Ireland's senior boss and Idah made his debut in a 1–1 draw away to Bulgaria in the 2020–21 UEFA Nations League.

The former Derry and Dunfermline coach insists that he has shown more than a passing interest in his former prodigy's fortunes since he sealed a loan move from the Canaries to Celtic in the January transfer window Kenny has been impressed so far as Idah has blasted in five goals and contributed one assist in nine appearances for Celtic totalling 520 minutes of football. The 23-year-old has already established himself as a bit of a fan favourite in three short months. Despite facing stiff competition for the striker's jersey in the shape of Japanese talisman Kyogo Furuhashi, Idah has more than held his own. 

Kenny is convinced that Idah possesses all the attributes to become a striker of repute under Brendan Rodgers's tutelage after showing he could cut it in elite company at full International level with the Republic. Kenny said: "I think Celtic was an interesting move for Adam. He has been doing well with the Republic of Ireland and I capped him at under-21 level and he hasn't looked back since.

"He burst on the scene with Ireland U21s after coming from Corinthians College in Cork and then got his move to Norwich and got into the first team there pretty early. He did very well for himself but he had to play second fiddle for a while to former Celtic striker Teemu Pukki when they were in the English Premier League.

There was criticism of his goals ratio at Carrow Road but a lot of those appearances he made in the English Premier League under Daniel Farke were substitute appearances so those statistics can be very misleading. He's been at Norwich for a few seasons but he has now gone out on loan to Celtic and I think it is a fantastic opportunity for him. It is one that he has grasped straight away and from the outside looking in I am sure he is enjoying his spell in Glasgow.

"Adam has pace. He is very quick. He has a real physical presence and technically he is very good. He can press aggressively and he can run the channels. He can be a focal point of any team's attack. He possesses all the right attributes that you need in a modern-day striker. Adam is playing at a good level now for both club and country and progressing his career along nicely. I think Brendan Rodgers is an ideal coach for a player like Adam at this time as he is still learning the game. Brendan will help Adam do that and contribute massively to his development. I'm sure Brendan will be working on improving Adam, especially with his movement in the box.

"He has a very good start and scored some good goals and important ones for Celtic already. The bar is set extremely high as a centre-forward for Celtic. Adam has gone in and shown that he can score goals at that level.

"He has proven that he can do it at every level as he scored a penalty for Ireland against Holland in the Aviva Stadium in the European Championship qualifiers when he was up against the likes of Virgil Van Dijk, Matthijs de Ligt and Nathan Ake. He has played a number of high-profile international games and has fared well and his best performances for Ireland have come against the better nations like Holland and France."

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Celtic Way:

Whilst Kenny does not have a crystal ball to predict the future as to whether or not Celtic will want to secure Idahs services on a permanent deal, he believes that his compatriot should just enjoy the football education that he will get under Rodgers in Glasgow's east end.

One thing is for certain, Idah will be a vastly improved player by the end of his loan spell. After all, Rodgers has been there, seen it and done it and worked with world-class talent at Anfield when he was the Liverpool boss. Kenny said: " Celtic are a fantastic club, a big club with fantastic traditions. Adam is now playing for a Celtic team that creates a lot of chances and it is no surprise to see him go up to Scotland and score goals. The ones that he has scored have been important goals for Celtic so far.

"He can only enhance the Celtic forward line and contribute positively in terms of his goals. He has shown that he can lead the Celtic attack and play with or without Kyogo Furuhashi in the team. I just think Adam will benefit greatly from this move and being in the Glasgow environment will be great for his development and progression. 

"First and foremost for Adam, he just has to focus on playing regular first-team football for Celtic and constantly strive to improve under Brendan. He has made a big contribution already and hopefully, he can continue to do that until the end of the season. I am sure Brendan and the Celtic coaching staff are working tirelessly with him. It is a different style of football for Adam and he will know that from turning out against Scottish teams who play with a low block and where space is limited. He likes to open his legs and exploit space but he will have had to adapt to the fact that sometimes in Scottish Premiership games that space won't be there.

"Tactically under Brendan, I know he will be getting the work put into his game for him to progress again. That is one of Brendan's key strengths and whatever happens to Adam at the end of his loan spell he will certainly be a better player for it. Brendan has worked with world-class forwards at Liverpool and the front line of Luis Suarez, Daniel Sturridge and Raheem Sterling immediately springs to mind. I do feel with Adam that he can learn a lot at Celtic and improve under Brendan.

"He is hungry to do that and he has all the right attributes as I said. All that Adam needs to add to his game now is the consistency of performance and whatever transpires at the end of the season, so be it."

READ MORE: Adam Idah insists Celtic can handle title race pressure

Celtic Way:

As Celtic chase down a Scottish Premiership and Scottish Cup double, Kenny reckons Idah's contribution down the final eight-game league season stretch could turn out to be a vital one. The 52-year-old insists that Idah's goals could well turn out to have a huge bearing on the final destination in the race for the Scottish Premiership flag in the most fiercely contested league title in years.

Kenny is well aware that come May Idah's goal contributions could be the key ingredient that swings the title race back in the men in green and white's favour. He said: "It is a very competitive Scottish Premiership this season and it is the tightest race in a while. The title will be won by a minimal amount of points. The league flag will be decided by fine margins and that is why the goals that Adam scores for Celtic will be a major contributory factor come the end of the season.

"The late winners against Hibs at Easter Road and Motherwell at Fir Park may turn out to be critical for Celtic in terms of the title race and as they could be the difference."