Thu. Feb 25th, 2021

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Neville defends Jesse Lingard’s Man United career after West Ham move

2 min read

Gary Neville has insisted Jesse Lingard has been unfairly viewed at Manchester United after his bright start to life on loan at West Ham.

The United academy graduate joined David Moyes’ side until the end of the season during the January transfer window after falling out of favour with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Lingard hadn’t started a Premier League match for United in over a year before his move to the London Stadium, having digressed to a squad player at Old Trafford.

Since moving south, Lingard has scored three goals in four matches for the Hammers, including the winner against Tottenham on Sunday, moving West Ham up to fourth in the table.

Neville has insisted that had Lingard started his career at West Ham, as opposed to United, he would have been viewed much differently during his career.

“Jesse Lingard was playing for England two years ago, he’s a good player,” he told the Gary Neville Podcast.

“The problem when you’re at Manchester United and you fall into a squad player system, you’re not a special player but you’re playing for Manchester United and people question ‘is he good enough for United’.

“There almost becomes a stigma around him, when really he’s a good player. If he was at West Ham to start with and people would ask whether other teams should be looking at him.

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Manchester United made heavy weather of their 3-1 win over Newcastle, eventually getting the job done at Old Trafford.

Marcus Rashford, Daniel James and Bruno Fernandes were on the scoresheet as United got back to winning ways in the league. They have a Europa League second leg vs Real Sociedad on Thursday.

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“Because he starts at Manchester United, it goes the other way. They think ‘he’s not good enough for United’ and it becomes a negative conversation and it’s not.

“Jesse Lingard will have a fantastic football career, he runs forward well, he has a good understanding of the game and David Moyes knew what he was signing.

“I’m surprised other clubs didn’t look at him but he’s done well at West Ham. I think they have two or three bright sparks around a strong spine, good full-backs and they’re having a good season.”

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