BRENDAN RODGERS hopes the five-goal impact of on-loan striker Adam Idah helps to persuade Celtic fans to accept his judgement of a player’s qualities.
The deadline-day arrival of the Republic of Ireland powerhouse brought an underwhelming response from the Hoops support who had been craving a big-name signing to add impetus to the team’s stuttering campaign.
Idah, who hadn’t been a first-team fixture at Championship outfit Norwich City, made his debut as a second-half substitute against Aberdeen at Pittodrie where he helped set up the equaliser for fellow-new Bhoy Nicolas Kuhn.
PARADISE…Adam Idah celebrates his first Parkhead goal following his header in the 7-1 midweek rout of Dundee.
The performances of the January recruits was welcomed, but the overall display and the 1-1 scoreline provoked a lukewarm response from the supporters.
Since then, Idah has fired in two immaculate penalty-kicks in the dramatic 2-1 victory over Hibs at Easter Road, thumped in another double in the comeback 3-1 success over Motherwell at Fir Park a week ago and claimed his first goal at Parkhead with a clever header in the 7-1 romp against Dundee in midweek.
The 6ft-plus raider is in line to lead the attack against Hearts in the High Noon shoot-out at Tynecastle this afternoon in another must-win confrontation for the champions who know a triumph in the capital will put them back in pole position in the Premiership by a point after their nearest challengers’ 2-1 reverse against Well at Ibrox yesterday.
Rodgers admitted he never doubted the potential of the youngster and said: “Hopefully, there will come a time here when I can be trusted – and maybe I have an idea of what I’m doing.

SMILES BETTER…Adam Idah celebrates his penalty-kick winner against Hibs with a little help from his team-mates Maik Nawrocki and Anthony Ralston.

“Adam was a player who came to us late. His agent rang me up and said there was a possibility.

“The agent knew I liked him as a young player. When he was available it excited me. Sometimes a player just needs a change of environment. ”

Rodgers, speaking to the Daily Record, added: “The negativity about Adam being third-choice striker at Norwich? For me, that wasn’t the case. I know that the potential is there with him.

“At 23 years old, he has everything to be a really top striker. Part of my strength is helping players develop and improve.

“He’s come in and really enjoyed it. He gives our team a presence.”

Celtic fans will back Idah all the way in his efforts to prove his manager right.

*DON’T miss the unbeatable match report and best in action images from Hearts v Celtic this afternoon – only in your champion CQN.

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