Idah returns to Canaries after coronavirus drama

Norwich City striker Adam Idah will miss the Republic of Ireland's upcoming Nations League games

Norwich City striker Adam Idah will miss the Republic of Ireland's upcoming Nations League games Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Adam Idah will not stay with the Republic of Ireland for their Nations League double header against Wales and Teemu Pukki’s Finland after sitting out their Euro2020 play-off exit due to positive coronavirus tests in the Irish camp.

Idah and Brighton’s Aaron Connolly were deemed to be ‘close contacts’ of a second member of the Republic’s backroom staff who returned a positive test ahead of Thursday’s penalty shoot out exit in Slovakia.

Republic chief Stephen Kenny confirmed after the game both players were fine and displaying no symptoms but had to be left out to comply with stringent measures in place in the Republic of Ireland regarding social distancing.

The Irish Independent reported on Friday morning the duo remained in Slovakia with a small delegation while the rest of the squad headed back to Dublin. The duo’s proximity to the individual who tested positive on the flight out earlier in the week is believed to be at the centre of this episode.

City have yet to make any official comment, but Idah has already been tested by the club’s own medical staff and expected to self-isolate from the rest of Daniel Farke’s squad while they await the results. Norwich is due to resume their Championship campaign at Rotherham United in eight days time.

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Marco Stiepermann returned a positive test result towards the end of the Premier League season and despite further negative test results was left out of Farke’s plans for a home game against Southampton and kept away from the rest of the squad as a precautionary measure.

The Irish Independent report the Irish squad needed a special exemption from their government to travel to Slovakia and return without having to undergo quarantine measures.

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Idah was in line for his third cap after his previous Under-21 boss Kenny had fast-tracked him into his senior set up.

Kenny insisted both Idah and Connolly were ‘perfectly fine’ when he spoke to the media after Thursday night’s game.

“We have different rules in Ireland than the UK,” said Kenny. “Much more stringent in terms of they would be deemed as close contacts to one of our non-footballing members of staff. It is very harsh to be ruled out. They are perfectly fine, there is nothing wrong with them but the two metre rule in Ireland is there.

“In the UK they would have been perfectly entitled to play.

“We had to abide by the medical advice. We did know earlier on and there was an appeal and we did appeal it on the basis of 1.7 metres compared to two metres, which is how far they were away. That wasn’t deemed sufficient.

“That is the way it goes. But the two lads feel fine.

“No other players are affected. We don’t have any issues in the camp. It was an issue with a non-footballing member of staff.”

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