CHRIS Powell admits Charlton are still some way off bringing in top striker target Sam Baldock from West Ham.

Baldock grabbed his third goal in as many pre-season games today as the Hammers won 3-0 at Southend to further boost his reputation among the several Championship clubs reportedly interested in acquiring the 23-year-old’s services.

Powell admits he is a fan but was quick to add a short move across the river was not going to happen immediately.

“He is a good player,” the Valley chief said.

“There is talk that he is available but we will have to see how that happens because he has been scoring goals for West Ham and he would improve any team.

“But that isn’t something which is imminent, that is for sure.”

Powell also conceded the wage demands he has met from some potential transfer targets this summer have been excessive so far.

“At times,” he admitted. “You make contact with the club and then you may speak to the advisor - you sound them out about a package.

“It kind of makes you open your eyes a little bit but that comes with the territory, we knew that would happen moving into the Championship.

“There are a lot of teams like the three teams who have come down, and there are one or two teams already in the division, that have money to spend.

“It is just one of those things that you’ve got to get the right player at the right price and you want to make sure his demands aren’t excessive and it doesn’t blow your budget out of the window.

“I’ve got a team and a squad here which I like but of course I want to make us better, I want to improve us and I’m hoping that is the case that over time I will get players in who come in at the right price, both in fees and also with regards to their contracts.”

The Addicks drafted in Jordan Cook and Lawrie Wilson earlier this week but Powell is still on the lookout for potentially three fresh faces.

“I’ve brought in two young players but Jordan Cook is just starting out on his career,” said the manager.

“He has had a few loan spells and is a lively player I feel will get better and the same with Lawrie Wilson.

“He has come back – another ex-player I’ve brought back without the name Danny – and he will cover that right side and I see him as a right back to push Chris Solly.

“We didn’t have another right back in the building.

“That is where he wants to play but he can play in other positions.

“But I do want more players. I think there is two or three areas I would like to strengthen and if I’m saying two or three areas, that means two or three players at least to come in.

“Hopefully that will happen sooner rather than later.

“It has taken a bit of time this year, no doubt. It is slightly different.

“Last year I was making wholesale changes and there was plenty of players who became available that I felt were right for us, but this year it has been a little bit trickier with regards to bringing players in but I’m hopeful that will happen over time. It has been a bit slow all over the place.

“I’ve tried to get one or two players, it hasn’t happened so you just move on and hope the people you are targeting you hopefully get them over the line and get them in the squad.”

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