Jesse Lingard hints at future away from Manchester United as ‘regular football is the most important thing’… while admitting last-minute England snub for Euro 2020 was ’emotional’
Now, ahead of what is set to be a busy summer with a long list of potential suitors ready and waiting, the 28-year-old has revealed that playing regular first team football is now more important to him than anything else.
Jesse Lingard has hinted that he is now ready to permanently leave Manchester United
Speaking to Sky Sports, Lingard outlined: ‘Regular football is the most important thing for me.
‘After going on loan and getting a good run in the team, you started to see the real me, with the goals and the assists.
‘I’ve never doubted my ability, I’ve always believed in myself. I spoke to the manager (Ole Gunnar Solskjaer) in pre-season and said, “I need game time”.
‘He said, “we can discuss it December time”, and we spoke again and he agreed to let me go on loan.
‘I had various conversations with him during my time at West Ham. He was very supportive and it was a great loan for me.’
Lingard dazzled at West Ham and said fans finally got to see ‘the real me’ in his performances
United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer opted to allow his player to go out on loan to West Ham
Lingard struck a brace on his Hammers debut and went on to score nine goals in 16 Premier League appearances, registering five assists along the way.
His sizzling form saw Gareth Southgate swiftly recall Lingard to the England camp, and include the Manchester-born star in his provisional 33-man squad for Euro 2020.
Lingard ultimately ended up being one of the names cut from the final 26-man grouping, and has admitted he felt low upon hearing the news.
He added: ‘It was emotional. You’re sad and you’re down, but you’ve got to respect the manager’s decision.
‘Me and Gareth have a great relationship, and now it’s about supporting the boys.
‘I love watching England – I’m a fan myself. I enjoyed going to the beer garden to watch the first game.
Lingard says he was ’emotional’ after learning he was to be cut from the England Euros squad
‘Last year, November time, I think no one thought I’d get near the team. But I worked hard, did well on loan and England came knocking.
‘I enjoyed the camp in March – it’s always good to be back with the boys. I played in those games, and then coming up to the Euros, being involved in the 33-man squad was brilliant as well.’
Lingard has been linked with a permanent move to West Ham, and the east London club have made little secret of their desire to get a deal done.
Premier League rivals Aston Villa and Wolves have also been reported to be preparing offers.
The 28-year-old has 12 months to run on his current deal and United could look to sell him this summer in order to recoup a transfer fee and avoid the playmaker walking away for free next year.