Blackpool youngster snapped up by Brighton as Premier League side see off competition from Aston Villa, Southampton and Wolves
Up-and-coming Blackpool youngster Charlie Penman has been snapped up by Premier League side Brighton & Hove Albion.
The centre-back announced on social media this week that he had joined the Seagulls’ academy.
According to transfer news website Football Insider, the top flight outfit have paid Blackpool around £300,000 in compensation.
It’s also been reported that Brighton beat off competition from Aston Villa, Southampton and Wolves to the 16-year-old’s signing.
Penman wrote on Twitter: “I’m absolutely delighted to have signed for Brighton’s academy.
“Many thanks to everybody at Blackpool who have helped and developed me into the player and person I am today.
“Also thanks to all my family, I love you all.”
Penman was highly rated at Bloomfield Road, having made his debut for the club’s Under-18 side in January aged just 15.
The rising star came on as a sub during the youth team’s Youth Alliance League game against Salford City.
Academy Director Ciaran Donnelly said: “The club did everything possible to secure Charlie’s long-term future at Blackpool, but his performances across a range of age groups over the past 12 months has brought about much interest from some of the biggest clubs in the country.
“We are naturally disappointed to lose such a talented youngster in Charlie, who has been with the club since he was nine-years-old.
"We have had an excellent long-standing relationship with Charlie and his parents and this was an incredibly difficult decision for them to come to, considering the progress the club continues to make.
“Even though we have lost a talented player to a Premier League side, we continue to build on the progress already made in the academy, with many talented youngsters coming through who can hopefully one day go on to represent the first-team.”
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