While he may be only 22-years old, Adam Idah has already experienced plenty of ups and downs in his career.
He was a huge prospect when coming through the youth ranks, impressing for both Norwich City and Ireland. He would then burst onto the scene at senior level, scoring a hat-trick for Norwich in an FA Cup game against Preston North End in January of 2020. He would be named in the Ireland squad for the first time later that year, quickly establishing himself as the first choice striker under Stephen Kenny.
It may have been expected that his career would go from strength to strength from this point, things haven't really worked out like that. His playing time at club level has been inconsistent, finding himself behind Teemu Pukki in the pecking order.
He would then suffer a couple of major knee injuries, ones that would force him to miss close to 40 games in 2022.
Thankfully, Idah is now back on track. While the goals have not been flowing this season, he has played in all but one of their Championship fixtures since mid December.
Adam Idah opens up on unprofessional approach earlier in his career
Adam Idah has been considered a top level prospect for quite some time, but it turns out that his approach away from the pitch has not always been befitting of someone of that status.
Speaking on The Beautiful Game Podcast, the Cork native admitted that he lacked professionalism at times during his career. This is something that only really changed during his rehab for the second knee injury that he suffered last year.
When I got injured first, I tore my meniscus, it was strange because I didn't really know what to do recovery wise.
I didn't really do it to the best of what I should have done. I would come into training late, probably not do enough gym work, not look after my knee.
I didn't think it was as serious as it was. I thought 'I'm 21 years of age, my knee is going to recover fine'. Then I came back from that and in my last session before I rejoined the squad, I slipped and did (the knee) again.
When I found out I had to get surgery the second time, the surgeon did say to me 'this could be really serious if you don't cop on'. That's when it hit me that I had to work really hard to get my knee back to what it was.
That made a big impact on me this season. It has probably changed a lot of things for me in terms of nutrition, sleeping, training, and recovery.
Before my nutrition wasn't the best. My nutrition wasn't bad, but I wouldn't look into it the way I do now. If someone offered me chocolate, I was going to eat it. Even if I had a game the next day, I wasn't turning down anything.
It was so important for my recovery to get that nutrition right. It made me realise that this does help the body a lot. Even things like sleep, I used to go to bed at all sorts of hours of the night.
There are so many little things you need to do to make your body right. It's all about learning, I'm still young and you do need these things to happen in order to understand what to do in the future.
These are learning curves that many young players have to go through, although it is a relief to hear that Adam Idah is now intent on doing everything he can to help himself perform on the pitch.
That can only be good news for Ireland moving forward.