Adam Idah finds himself in an incredibly bizarre situation at the moment.
Since the start of last season, he has featured for 706 minutes for Norwich City. On the other hand, he has played 825 minutes at international level.
While it is encouraging to see him play so often for Ireland, the situation he finds in at club level is a concerning one. A player featuring more often for his international side than his club team can't be a good thing.
He may be only 20-years old, but he needs more playing time. Opportunities have been extremely limited at Norwich, with Teemu Pukki usually occupying the lone striker spot in the starting XI.
Should a temporary move be considered or would the Cork man be better off biding his time at a Premier League club over the coming months?
Speaking at a press conference this morning, Dean Smith said that while he has been impressed with Adam Idah's progress in recent times, it is tough to strike a balancing act when it comes to his playing time or a possible loan.
Dean Smith compares Adam Idah's situation to the one he had with Keinan Davis at #AVFC.
Many feel a loan move would benefit him at this stage. Smith admits it's a tough balancing act. But, they have seen improvement on the training pitch from him. #NCFC
— Connor Southwell (@cjsouthwell1902) January 7, 2022
— Michael Bailey (@michaeljbailey) January 7, 2022
The Keinan Davis comparison is an interesting one, with the young striker kept out of the Aston Villa team by more experienced teammates during Smith's time at the club.
Davis is three years Idah's senior and recently joined Nottingham Forest on loan, having previously featured around the same rate as the Irishman over the last couple of seasons.
However, the difference in age and experience at international level means he should be ahead of where the Aston Villa player was at this stage of his career.
This week marked two years since Idah scored a hat-trick in the FA Cup against Preston North End, a game that was meant to announce his arrival into senior football.
— Norwich City FC (@NorwichCityFC) January 4, 2022
Whereas hopes were high that he would be given a run in the Norwich team as a result of that performance, he has scored a total of three goals in senior football over the last 24 months.
Unless Dean Smith can assure him of consistent playing time over the remainder of the season, now may finally be the time to take the plunge and leave the club on loan. There would certainly be no shortage of interested parties in the Championship.