Lee Bowyer has revealed his frustration with Charlton’s attempts to compete in the transfer market as he chases several new players ahead of the upcoming Championship season.

The Addicks boss, who has insisted on the need for five new loan signings, admits they have come close to deals only for other financially superior clubs to outbid them.

Charlton were reportedly set to bring striker Marc McNulty to The Valley in a bid to bolster their attacking options but were beaten to the punch by Sunderland.

Although Bowyer says it’s a tough situation to be in he remains confident his side has enough to do well in the Championship this campaign.

He said: “At the moment, whenever we think we've got a player over the line - this is the most frustrating thing for me at the moment - someone just comes in and outbids us, and unfortunately that's something we can't control.

“There's some good players that have slipped through our fingers but that's the hard thing to accept because I do believe, if we really had a go, then I think we could do really well in this league.

“I know what the situation is and I accept the situation. I'm not making any excuses, we have our budget and that's it. If someone comes and bids more and offers more then there's nothing more we can do.

“It's tough because people are laughing at us. An agent would say, 'What do you have to offer for this player?' and people are laughing. I've had agents laughing, like, 'How are you meant to compete with what you're offering?'

“That's the situation we're in. Whether we like it or not that's the situation but we'll just keep going and we will get people in, I know that.

“But it's just frustrating for myself and Steve [Gallen, Charlton's head of recruitment] when we're working so hard and we think we've got someone and then someone just outbids us.”

Former Charlton winger Ademola Lookman recently joined Bundesliga side RB Leipzig on a permanent deal from Everton for a reported £22.5 million.

It’s believed the Addicks have received a small percentage of the profit Everton made on the transfer, which some suggested could be a significant boost.

Meanwhile, names which have been linked with a move to The Valley include former Villa ace Ross McCormack and Bristol City’s Matty Taylor.

Asked about the speculative names, Bowyer said: “Obviously I'm not going to talk about other people's players, it's just disrespectful. I wouldn't like it if people were talking about my players.

“I'm not going to name names but, obviously, we're looking for midfielders. We have to replace Josh Cullen, Joe Aribo and Krystian Bielik and we need strikers. We've only got Lyle [Taylor] and Macauley [Bonne] at the moment and, for me, we need two more.

“We're going to try and bring in the best people that we can because we want to compete. If we can bring in the right people then I do believe that we will surprise teams, for sure.”

Nevertheless, the Addicks boss remains confident in his squad and insists they will “surprise teams” this season.

Speaking after the 4-1 defeat to Villa, which was marked as Chris Solly's testimonial, he added: “I spoke to John Terry after the game and the manager Dean [Smith] and they said, 'You did well, you held your own'.

“It wasn't like they were carving us open and they were given us the run-around, it wasn't like that, and that's a team that dominated from when the manager stepped in last season.

“He turned that whole football team around, they went on a massive run and they were the best side in the Championship come the end of last season.

“I think we held our own for big parts of the game apart from silly little mistakes, and these are the games you want to get those mistakes out of the system because that's why you play them.

“Once we get going, five or six games in, I think we'll be good.”