Sam Allardyce says he was reluctant to let Ademola Lookman depart on loan

Sam Allardyce says that he was reluctant to let Ademola Lookman leave on loan but the young forward is desperate to play football.

The 20-year-old joined RB Leipzig on loan just minutes before Everton were set to kick off their Wednesday night win over Leicester City, leaving fans around the ground confused by the decision.

After the win, Allardyce stated that Lookman “got his own way” with the loan deal and spoke about the move again when questioned during his pre-Arsenal press conference on Friday.

The Blues boss answered: “I was (reluctant to let Lookman go). He insisted so rather than have a player that was gonna have the wrong attitude around the place he wanted to play some football.

“I think that for us and for him, I wasn’t very keen on it, based on the fact that we’d already let (Kevin) Mirallas and Aaron Lennon go, but he really wanted to get some football and we chose that because of the offer from Leipzig - and we had another from a top Championship club - he chose Leipzig.”

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Tough, tough test

Allardyce has expressed his concerns about Lookman joining the Bundesliga club with the league being a “very, very difficult challenge” and also a difference in culture at such a young age.

“He’s got all his choices to go and get some experience and hopefully a lot of first-team football in the Bundesliga which, for me, is a very very difficult challenge for anybody,” the 63-year-old said.

“But somebody at such a young age, not only from a football point of a view, he’s got lots of talent, but from a cultural point of a view and a language point of a view he could find that difficult.”

The young forward has already joined up with his new side and could make his debut on Saturday as Leipzig prepare to take on Borussia Mönchengladbach.