Everton sign Ademola Lookman from Charlton in £10m deal as manager Ronald Koeman predicts a big future for the teenager at Goodison Park
- Everton have completed the signing of Charlton’s Ademola Lookman for £10m
- The wide player has signed a four-and-a-half-year deal at Goodison Park
- Ronald Koeman is keen for Lookman to be involved with the Everton first team
- Lookman’s is the most expensive player ever signed from a League One club
Everton manager Ronald Koeman has welcomed the arrival of teenage forward Ademola Lookman to his first-team squad.
The £10million signing from Charlton was the subject of a Secret Scout report in Sportsmail last January and Koeman said: ‘Lookman is a player for the future. We will see how long it takes when he gets a chance.
‘He is 19 and we expect a lot from the boy.’
Lookman, who made 49 appearances for Charlton after coming through the club’s youth set-up, has signed a four-and-a-half-year contract which will keep him at Goodison Park until the summer of 2021.
Charlton had been keen for Lookman to remain at The Valley on loan for the rest of the season, but Everton boss Ronald Koeman wants his new recruit to be involved with his first team squad.
The Toffees saw off interest from Crystal Palace to secure a deal for Lookman, which makes him the most expensive player ever signed from a League One club, ahead of Fabian Delph and Nick Powell.
Lookman is delighted to have made the move and believes working under Koeman is exactly what he needs to further his career as he makes the step up to the Premier League.
He said: ‘It feels great to be an Everton player. As soon as I heard about Everton’s interest I knew this would be the right place for me. Everton has a big history and I was also attracted by the manager.
‘When you look at what he did at Southampton, and what he does with young players in terms of developing them, that was a big attraction.
‘It was great playing in the Championship last season and for the last six months in League One but I feel like I’m ready to make the step up to the Premier League.’
Lookman scored seven times in 25 appearances for Charlton this season, with Koeman excited to have the talented youngster at his disposal.
The Dutchman said: ‘Ademola is a big talent and, at 19 years old, he has a big future in the game. I’m really happy that we’ve been able to bring him here to the club.
‘This is part of the vision we have for the club and it’s important to give to young players the opportunity so that the team continues to evolve and improve.
‘We believe in the player and in the development of the player which, of course, will take time but he will have a big part to play in the future of the club.’
Koeman also confirmed striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin would be out for up to eight weeks with an ankle injury and is hoping for more signings, including Manchester United duo Morgan Schneiderlin and Memphis Depay.
‘We know the players we want and it is up to the board to make the deals,’ he said.
Lookman, who prefers to be known as ‘Mola’, will wear the No 31 shirt at Goodison. He will not be available to make his debut against Leicester in the FA Cup, though, given he is cup tied after playing for Charlton earlier in this year’s competition.
Despite the fact this is his first full season as a professional, Lookman has carved out quite a reputation for himself in such a short space of time.
Arsenal and Crystal Palace have both watched the exciting 19-year-old forward on a regular basis since his breakthrough into the Charlton first-team. Palace made a big play for him in the summer but couldn’t agree a deal.
So, six months later, Everton are the beneficiaries. Quite a coup for the Toffees.
So quite a rapid rise to fame then?
Absolutely. Particularly considering he’s not been involved within the academy system since an early age.
He only joined the Charlton youth set-up in 2014, joining from south London-based amateur side Waterloo FC. But an impressive goal record for the Addicks’ Under 18 and U21 sides saw him make a meteoric rise into the senior set-up.
He made his first-team bow, as an 18-year-old, against MK Dons in November last year. His first goal arrived in a 3-2 defeat at Brighton a month later. Lookman hasn’t looked back since.
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