Rumour Mill: Liverpool battling for Charlton forward Ademola Lookman

Liverpool are said to be one of five top Premier League sides who have expressed an interest in Charlton Athletic’s Ademola Lookman.

The 18-year-old attacking midfielder has enjoyed a remarkable rise into the Charlton first team, and this has seen a host of Premier League outfits monitor his progress ahead of the January transfer window.

That is according to the Mirror‘s Adrian Kajumba, who claims that Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester City and Brighton & Hove Albion are also interested.

“Scouts from City, Chelsea and Spurs were at Brighton on Saturday to run the rule over Lookman and saw him score his first professional goal in the Addicks’ 3-2 defeat,” Kajumba writes.

Arsenal were also present and have now watched all five of Lookman’s Charlton appearances.”

Lookman broke into the Charlton first-team setup in November, but caught the eye of top-level scouts with his performances for the Addicks’ U18s and U21s sides.

This comes after the Englishman was picked up from lowly south London side Waterloo FC in 2014, swiftly developing in the club’s academy ranks before being called upon by first-team manager Karel Fraeye.

“This is a very big step up for me. I’ve still got to work hard, do the right things and look to establish myself in the squad,” he told Charlton’s official website after making his senior debut.

“Coming from Sunday league into a professional club was always going to be a big step. I’m happy with how I’ve adapted and I’m pleased with my progress.”

Lookman will be inspired by the positive progress made by former Charlton academy star Joe Gomez, who joined Liverpool this summer.

Currently sidelined with a season-ending ACL injury, Gomez looked set to establish himself as a regular first-team player at Anfield this season.

Gomez’s seamless transition to top-level football will have encouraged other sides to look to the Championship for youth talent.

With Lookman’s current Charlton contract set to expire in 2017, they are looking to secure him to a new long-term deal.

This may well transpire, as with Gomez prior to his Merseyside move, but Kajumba suggests that the likes of Liverpool and Arsenal could make their interest concrete in January.

“Charlton want to tie Lookman down to a new deal but their hopes could be scuppered due to the mounting interest,” he continues.

“City are keen to buy Lookman in January and loan him back to Charlton while their top-flight rivals are also keeping tabs and weighing up new year bids.”