West Ham United are monitoring breakout Charlton Athletic forward Miles Leaburn with a view to making a move for the player, TEAMtalk can exclusively reveal.
The forward, who turned 20 last month, has 10 goal contributions from 18 outings for the League One club this season and is being assessed over how soon he could step up to a higher level.
West Ham have a two-tiered approach to recruitment as the new year approaches, with the club seeking young talent within the Football League to complement the more established names they are looking for to ignite the first team under David Moyes.
And Leaburn – son of former Charlton front man Carl Leaburn, who scored 53 goals for the Addicks in 322 appearances between 1987 and 1998 – is a player they have been keeping a close eye on across this season.
It is believed Charlton, currently plying their trade in the third tier of English football having lost their Premier League status back in 2007, are hopeful of keeping hold of him during this early phase of development. Leaburn has scored seven times this term in all competitions, with three assists.
He was part of Chelsea’s famed academy system as a youth player before joining Charlton in 2019, making his debut for the club in July 2022 at the age of 18.
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His aerial prowess and instinctive finishing in and around the box are attractive traits that have sparked links with a return to Chelsea in recent months.
Brentford – set to lose Ivan Toney, who fired the club to the Premier League after arriving from Peterborough United in 2020, in the January transfer window – have also been linked with a move for Leaburn, but the Hammers are continuing to track him and could look more seriously into signing him in 2024.
West Ham manager Moyes has a long-held reputation for plucking promising talent from the lower leagues, having signed the likes of Joleon Lescott (from Wolverhampton Wanderers), Andy Johnson (Crystal Palace) and Jermaine Beckford (Leeds United) during his nine-year tenure at Everton between 2002 and 2013.
More recently, meanwhile, Moyes brought Jarrod Bowen to West Ham from Championship club Hull City on the final day of the transfer window in January 2020.
Bowen has since emerged as one of West Ham’s brightest stars, memorably scoring the winning goal in last season’s Europa Conference League final to secure the club’s first trophy in 43 years.
The 26-year-old has also made five appearances for England under Gareth Southgate.