Manchester United v Manchester City Match in Pictures
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Manchester United star Jesse Lingard could be on his way back to West Ham United, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side reportedly willing to let him leave for a cut price. The dynamic midfielder rejuvenated his footballing career during a magnificent loan spell with David Moyes’ side last season.
From the minute he arrived at the London Stadium he was a perfect fit, contributimng nine goals and five assists in 16 Premier League matches as the East Londoners qualified for the Europa League.
He broke Hammers’ hearts when he decided to commit his future to Old Trafford and fight for his place in Solskjaer’s star studded squad.
Unfortunately, he appears to have taken two steps back at United, having only played 63 Premier League minutes over the course of five appearances.
And Lingard looks to have decided enough is enough, and reports from the Sun have claimed the Red Devils could be willing to let him depart the club for as little as £10m.
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Solskjaer’s sparing utilisation of Lingard has come as a surprise due to his outstanding performances for the Hammers last season.
He even played himself back into England contention but fell just short when Gareth Southgate announced his final squad for the European Championships.
While starts were difficult to come by for the 18-year-old, his form for United was still impressive as he came off the bench to score in consecutive matches in the victories against Newcastle United and West Ham.
His effort against Moyes’ side was a spectacular strike into the top corner, which secured a valuable three points in the dying stages of the contest.
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But with his contract set to expire next summer, Lingard’s 13 years at United looks to be in its final stages.
Having rejected a new contract offer from the club in September, according to the Manchester Evening News, Lingard’s time at Old Trafford has been petering towards an exit.
October reports from the Daily Mail also claimed European giants Barcelona and AC Milan were keeping tabs on the playmaker, with the intention of signing him on a free transfer at the end of his contract next season.
But with West Ham currently sitting in third place, the Hammers are riding on a wave of excitement, and most importantly, momentum.
They ended Liverpool’s impressive unbeaten start to the season with an impressive 3-2 victory at the London Stadium.
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Moyes has arguably been the manager of the season so far, and Lingard may very well be tempted into a return to the capital.
And this could very well be bad news for Manchester United, who will likely be competing for the Champions League spots with West Ham.
Solskjaer’s side are still floundering in sixth position having lost three of their last four Premier League matches.
Six points currently divide United and West Ham, and with enormous matches against Watford, Chelsea, and Arsenal on the horizon, they could plummet even further down the table.
And if Lingard was to depart the club and produce performances half as good as his spell last season, then West Ham could very well pip United to the top four.
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