England international Jesse Lingard is yet to decide whether he wants to leave Manchester United this summer or return and fight for his spot at Old Trafford.
The 28-year-old has been in outrageous form since joining West Ham United on loan in January, bagging eight goals and four assists in just nine games for the Hammers – who are understandably keen to tie him down to a permanent deal.
Reports suggest there have even been admiring glances cast in Lingard’s direction from Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Inter, so it’s safe to say he won’t be short of options come summer time.
But Lingard, as noted by Goal, is yet to decide what he wants to do, and instead is keeping all available options open – which includes a potential return to United.
Now, in what could be the most obvious statement of all time, the report says that Lingard would only return to United if he was promised a significant increase in playing time. He didn’t feature at all in the Premier League in the first half of the season, and given the success of his spell at West Ham, that’s not an appealing proposition to return to.
United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has always left the door open to a potential return for Lingard, and he recently confessed that the England international would be welcome back at Old Trafford with open arms.
“Jesse has been brilliant since he left,” Solskjaer said. “Selfishly, we could have kept him because he’s always got a part to play.
“Jesse is a fantastic lad around the place, he’s Man Utd through and through, and never once did he moan or cause me a problem. He just came in and worked really hard and he deserved a chance to play more football, that’s why we let him go to West Ham because he deserved a chance for what’s he’s done throughout his life for Man Utd.
We will welcome him back. I hope he’ll go to the Euros with his performances now and the confidence he has got, I don’t think that’s beyond him, and I hope he has a strong finish to the league.
“Then, it was different here because Bruno [Fernandes] the form he has shown and he played arguably in Jesse’s favoured position and that was just a decision we made. I’m delighted for Jesse and wish him all the best for the rest of the season until he comes back.”