Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has confirmed Jesse Lingard is in his Manchester United plans for the time being.
It looked like Lingard’s career at Old Trafford was over, but his stunning form on loan at West Ham caused United to think twice. He didn’t make a single Premier League appearance in the first half of last season, but signed for the Irons in January, where he scored nine goals in 16 games.
His stunning turnaround led to Solskjaer giving him a chance in pre-season, and he featured as a substitute in their victory over Derby. Speaking after the game, Solskjaer admitted Lingard’s determination to fight for his place has won him over, and challenged him to continue the form he showed at West Ham now he’s back at his parent club.
“He came seven or eight days later than the rest but he’s a naturally fit boy,” Solskjaer said post-game. “He’s a man, he played with a few boys but he’s one of the men!
“Jesse has come back, been bright, he wants to fight for his place and there’s nothing better than seeing players want to fight for their place.
“What he did towards the end of last season, that’s the true Jesse, that’s what we know he’s capable of. I think we saw towards the end of the season that we lacked some options at times, so Jesse is in the plans at the moment.”
Lingard last turned out for United in an FA Cup win over Watford in January, and despite his impressive form at West Ham, it was expected that they would cash in on him while his stock is high.
But despite various links with the Irons, Arsenal, Tottenham and Atletico Madrid, no clubs have met United’s valuation as yet, and it seems they are prepare to make use of him until that happens.