Man United “determined” to keep Lingard
Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjær remains adamant that the Old Trafford outlet aim to keep England international midfielder Jesse Lingard.
Lingard remains on the outside looking in at United at the minute, after a summer that saw Cristiano Ronaldo return to Manchester despite an already overloaded attacking core under the Norwegian headmaster, adding another obstacle in his pathway to first-team minutes. At current, Lingard has managed just a combined 46-minutes of action for United this season across three substitute appearances, including 18-minutes in a shock 2-1 defeat away at BSC Young Boys in their opening Champions League group stage fixture.
Last night hurt. Everytime I pull on the shirt, I hope people understand what it means to me. I always go out wanting to do the best for the club, the team and the fans. I’m upset for my part in the defeat. Mistakes happen in football but we pick ourselves up and go again. pic.twitter.com/naTlNMop8L
— Jesse Lingard (@JesseLingard) September 15, 2021
Despite his lack of pitch time in the early doors of the 2021-22 season, Solskjær is keen to extend the 28-year-old Red Devils youth product past the current season.
“Jesse has come back to us after a great spell at West Ham. He showed his qualities, he’s got back into the England squad and he’s scoring goals for England. We really want to see the best of Jesse this season and we hope to see him. We support him, and we hope to keep him here with us. He’s a Red through and through.”
A missed opportunity at West Ham
Support is all well and good, but support will not guarantee a suitable pathway to minutes for a player that is capable of so much more.
In that light, attention must be brought to the fact that Lingard himself turned down the chance to join West Ham this summer after a highly successful loan period in the second-half of last season.
On the back of 16-appearances that saw the England man bag 9-goals and add 5-assists in a brilliant contributions return after featuring for United just three times before securing his loan move, Lingard has reaffirmed his importance to the Three Lions under Gareth Southgate and felt confident of fighting for his place at Old Trafford.
But deals for both the aforementioned Ronaldo and fellow England squad mate Jadon Sancho, coupled with the ever-increasing progression of Mason Greenwood, the Warrington-native has been frozen out of the starting XI justifiably.
Unless Lingard is able to reestablish his status at the club, a free transfer in the summer seems all the more likely, whether it will be to West Ham or not remains to be seen.