Lookman finds home in Atalanta


Nigerian winger Ademola Lookman has finally found a home in Italy with Serie A side, Atalanta.
Lookman’s career has been largely influenced by loan moves across England and Germany.
The 24-year-old started his professional career at Charlton Athletic in 2015, before securing a move to Everton in 2017.
Lookman began the loan journeys after signing for the Toffees, first to RB Leipzig in 2018, before they made the move permanent in 2019. After scoring five goals in 11 games during his loan period but failing to score any in the preceeding season, the Red Bulls loaned him out to Fulham in 2020, where he scored four goals in 34 games.
After leaving Fulham, Lookman did not return to Germany, instead he went on another season-long loan to Leicester City in 2021. For the Foxes, Lookman scored six goals in 26 Premier League appearances as they finished eighth after an injury-ridden start and serious problems with defending set-pieces.
Leicester could have made his move permanent for £14m over the summer, thanks to an option clause in his loan deal, but could not afford to make it happen because of their severely restricted transfer budget over the summer.
After returning to parent club Leipzig, Lookman was quickly on the move again. He was snapped up by Atalanta, at the recommendation of former Leicester recruitment chief Lee Congerton, who joined the Italian club at the end of last season.
And the Nigerian is now tearing it up at Atalanta this season. He has played all six league games so far, assisting two and scoring one, and his goals tally should have been two (his shot against Monza was deflected for an own-goal).
His contributions on the pitch have done enough to send Atalanta to the top of Serie A table. They have now slipped to second behind Napoli on goals difference, but it has been a strong start for the team.
In fact, it was Lookman bursting into the Atalanta starting XI over the summer that displaced Leicester’s deadline day target Jeremie Boga. Leicester failed in their move to sign Boga because the clubs could not agree on the terms of a potential loan deal.
Previously featuring as cover for the first team at former clubs, Lookman’s constant presence in the team sheet at Atalanta must have positively impacted his form as confidence from the coaching staff is known to boost a player’s confidence.