Jesse Lingard’s career was resurrected last season after a loan spell with West Ham United seemingly put the 28-year-old back on track.
Having fallen down the pecking order at Old Trafford due to a loss of form and personal reasons, Lingard moved to the London Stadium in January on a loan deal until the end of the season and few would have predicted just how successful it turned out to be.
He scored nine goals in 16 appearances for David Moyes’ team as he helped them to a sixth-placed finish in the Premier League, helping them earn a place in the group stages of the Europa League in the process.
Despite playing less than half the league season for the Hammers, only Michail Antonio and Tomas Soucek scored more goals than Lingard, whose form also saw him recalled to the England squad. He narrowly missed out on a place in Gareth Southgate’s final 26-man squad for the European Championship, seemingly being the 27th man on standby.
There was clear interest from West Ham in re-signing the attacking midfielder, who won PFA Player of the Month for the month of April, but they were unable to come to terms on a deal with United who chose to keep him at the club. Since then it has been much of the same for Lingard, who has started just one game in all competitions this season – United’s League Cup defeat to West Ham at Old Trafford.
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His other eight appearances in the Champions League and Premier League have been as a substitute, playing just 155 minutes of football across the season. Having shown what he is capable of in the first months of the calendar year, that surely isn’t sustainable, particularly given that he has again lost his place in the most recent England squad.
He has too much to offer to be a substitute at Manchester United and recently sparked speculation over a return to the London Stadium when he reposted a picture of him in a Hammers shirt from West Ham’s official Instagram account.
A free agent at the end of the season, a return to the London Stadium looks to make sense for all parties, particularly with the lack of impact seen from his replacement Nikola Vlasic since his €30 million move in the summer. That said, West Ham won’t be the only club interested in his services and all odds featured below are supplied by Paddy Power.
Jesse Lingard Next Club Odds
- West Ham United – 8/15
- Newcastle United – 6/1
- Everton – 16/1
- Tottenham Hotspur – 20/1
- Crystal Palace – 20/1
- AC Milan – 33/1
- Roma – 33/1
- Barcelona – 33/1
West Ham are the clear favourites to make a return bid for Lingard having reportedly failed with an offer of around £25m in the summer. Given that he will be free to leave for nothing come the end of the season, Manchester United’s asking price is likely to be significantly lower than what it once was, even if they are selling to a top four rival.
The price of 8/15 indicates this is a deal that is very much in the works and it’s clear to see why Lingard would be keen on a reunion in East London, with a reported fee of £10m being demanded for him.
Newcastle United have been linked with just about every player under the sun since their Saudi takeover and Lingard does look to fit the player profile that they would be interested in recruiting in their first transfer window. Coming with Premier League experience and a clear upgrade on the players they currently have in his position, Lingard could make a big impact on their fight for survival. They are priced at 6/1.
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The road from Manchester United to Everton is a path well-trodden through the years with the likes of Andrei Kanchelskis, Phil Neville, Tim Howard, Louis Saha, Darron Gibson and Morgan Schneiderlin all making the direct switch from Old Trafford to Goodison Park in the Premier League era.
Everton have been working with a tight budget to fit in with FFP regulations, signing Demarai Gray and Andros Townsend on cheap deals over the summer and could be a viable option for Lingard at 16/1 if he wants to stay closer to home in the North West.
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