18-year-old striker Adam Uche Idah scored a fine hat-trick in the Canaries 4-2 victory at Preston in an FA Cup tie at the weekend to spark off a Twitter war between fans of the two countries.
Football fans from Ireland and Nigeria took to social media to exercise their claim over youngster Adam Idah following the Norwich striker’s fantastic treble in the Cup win at Preston North End.
Idah, in only his second start for the club, became the youngest player to net a hat-trick for the Canaries. He opened the scoring in the second minute with a calm finish, added a brilliant second from range before half-time, and completed his hat-trick from the penalty spot — after he was brought down — just after the hour-mark.
The youngster’s treble means he’s the first teenager to score three times in one game in the competition since Leicester City’s Kelechi Iheanacho, who achieved the feat for Manchester City against Aston Villa four years ago.
Nigeria fans did not waste time in acknowledging and highlighting the deep Nigerian roots of Adam Uche Idah with one raising this alarm:
“There’s a Nigerian, Adam Uche Idah that scored a hat trick for Norwich and no one seems to be talking about him.”
There’s a Nigerian, Adam Uche Idah that scored a hat trick for Norwich and no one seem to be talking about him. #FACup
— Surv. ABIOLA (@solarville2) January 4, 2020
Many were delighted with his exploits with one writing:
“Two Nigerian-born youngsters, Adam Uche Idah and Tom Dele Bashiru on the scoresheet for both Norwich City and Watford FC respectively in today’s FA cup matches.”
Two Nigerian-born youngsters,Adam Uche Idah and Tom Dele Bashiru on the scoresheet for both Norwich City and Watford FC respectively in today's FA cup matches.
— Dewole Dedokun (@BushReloaded) January 4, 2020
Another proud Nigerian also stated:
“Nigerian Forward Adam Uche Idah just scored a hat-trick for Norwich City vs Preston. That good Naija blood.”
Yet another fan was already predicting a Super Eagles future for the kid wonder:
“What a start to a career today for Adam Uche Idah at Norwich. Just his third senior appearance for the club and scores a hattrick in the FA Cup.
He was born in Ireland but his father is Nigerian. A future Super Eagle?”
What a start to a career today for Adam Uche Idah at Norwich.
Just his third senior appearance for the club and scores a hattrick in the FA Cup.
— PredictZ Nigeria (@PredictZNigeria) January 4, 2020
Before long, Irish fans had had enough and refused to watch in silence as their African counterpart clothed the Ireland U-21 youth international in the green and white colours of Nigeria.
An Irish Twitter user pointed out the error being peddled around the social media space.
“He’s not Irish born, Nigerian. He’s Irish full stop,” he corrected.
He’s not Irish born, Nigerian. He’s Irish full stop
— Cathal (@mxrtinelliszn) January 4, 2020
One George Oscar Bluth explained the origin issue clearly this way:
“He plays for Ireland and was born in Ireland so…”
He plays for Ireland and was born in Ireland so…
— George Oscar Bluth (@magicgobbluth) January 4, 2020
Almost at the edge of losing it, one firmly quipped,
“He is known as Adam Idah, not Adam Uche Idah. Don’t get your hopes up. He’s Irish and will play for Ireland.”
But trust Nigerians to not leave it be without firing the parting shot.
The bloodiest shot came from one Scouse_Heart:
“Adam Uche Idah, born in Ireland to a Nigerian father and an Irish mother. Since it’s a hattrick he scored and not that he tried to blow up a mall in cork, he’s more of an Irish than a Nigerian now.”
Adam Uche Idah, born in Ireland to a Nigerian father and an Irish mother. Since it's a hattrick he scored and not that he tried to blow up a mall in cork, he's more of an Irish than a Nigerian now
— #EndSARS (@Scouse_Heart93) January 5, 2020
“He’s a Nigerian, full stop,” this user fired back.
It is important to note that the Republic of Ireland Under-21 international remains eligible for Nigeria via his father.