ADAM Idah played a crucial role yet again for the Republic Of Ireland U21s on Tuesday evening with what was a man of the match display in the impressive victory against Sweden.
College Corinthians graduate Idah had a very productive night, scoring a well taken goal and providing a great assist. This was another quality display at U21 level for the young Norwich City attacker, where his physicality and class in possession shone through.
“Of course I am delighted,” said Idah after the game at Tallaght Stadium.
“The team played unbelievable, to go 1-0 down and to win 4-1 was just a great feeling.
“I think the message at half time was just to be brave on the ball. In the first half there was times we were just forcing it and nobody wanted to get on the ball.
“So I thought at half time we came out and said there is nothing to lose here, just go out and give it your all.
“I think that is what the boys did and you could tell we had a good team performance.
“I was delighted to get the assist. To get the goal topped it off. I was very happy with my own performance and the team performance."
Leesider Caoimhín Kelleher was unavailable so 17-year-old Gavin Bazunu stepped in between the posts in the resounding 4-1 win, where the home side really clicked in the second half.
Troy Parrott, who was in the squad for the senior Denmark game the night before, played an influential role and was to find the back of the net.
The other Irish goals came from fellow senior Irish debutant against New Zealand Lee O’Connor and Zak Elbouzedi of Waterford Stephen Kenny’s side are in a very healthy position in their qualifying group going into the final number of games in 2020.
After winning five out of their seven games, Ireland are now top of the group and are three points ahead of Italy.
“I think we have grown a lot," said Idah. "You can tell since the Luxembourg game we’ve bonded really well together.
“I know there’s been new players coming into the squad and they have settled in just as good as the other players.
“So I think this team is great and we are growing even more now and just getting started.
"I think Stephen (Kenny) mentioned a while back there is five different age groups in this team. So the maturity is unbelievable from Gavin Bazunu to Jay Molumby and Dara O’Shea. It is great to have them players in the team.”
Next up for the Irish U21s and Idah will be a home clash against Iceland on March 26.
Meanwhile, Cork City U15 duo Cathal Heffernan and Joe O'Brien Whitmarsh both featured for the U15s in a victory over Poland.
Heffernan netted a goal, with the countries meeting again on Thursday.