Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is clashing with Jesse Lingard over a potential move away from Old Trafford this month, reports say. The England international is wanted by seven clubs, with Tottenham and West Ham among them. And whether he’s granted his wish over a loan exit is something only time will tell.
For years, United were convinced Lingard would be a vital asset.
Louis van Gaal rated the playmaker highly, with the England international winning the FA Cup for the club during the Dutchman’s final game in charge against Crystal Palace in 2015.
Jose Mourinho was a big admirer, too, and Solskjaer was convinced Lingard would be a key player during his own reign.
However, that’s yet to happen.
Lingard has suffered an alarming drop-off in form over the past two years, scoring just one Premier League goal in the last 18 months.
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Tottenham boss Mourinho is eyeing a reunion over in north London, but the Red Devils are unlikely to do business with their rivals.
West Ham and Sheffield United are eager to secure the 28-year-old’s signature, too.
Inter Milan are another club in the mix, with Antonio Conte previously raiding United for the likes of Ashley Young, Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez.
And Nice, Marseille and Porto are also keen.
Solskjaer was tight-lipped when quizzed on Lingard over the weekend, with the 47-year-old saying: “Jesse is part of our group.
“Of course we have not seen the best of Jesse, we’ve not seen a lot of Jesse this season, for different reasons.
“He has got a year and a half left on his contract, I speak to Jesse more or less every day so our communication is really good.
“He works really hard in training and he is ready for his chances when they come and we just take it from there.
“I can’t really speak for Jesse and what we have spoken about but of course Jesse wants to play football and he is a good player when he plays football at his best so let’s see what will happen.”
Former United star Dimitar Berbatov thinks Lingard’s time is up.
He told Stadium Astro: “Honestly, his time is up. He’s not playing. He had his chances to shine, to prove how good he is, how good he can be.
“It shows that, for the moment, Ole does not trust him enough to play him and honestly he doesn’t have anywhere to play in the team right now.
“So when you’ve been so long in one team and, coming to 28 [years old], you have to look back and say, ‘Did I achieve enough? Am I happy with what I’ve done here? Is my time up?’
“So I think he need to move, he needs to go somewhere else to play.”