The 22-year-old suffered a cruel injury on his Premier League debut last season and has seen his breakthrough into the first-team delayed by those problems.
Speaking about Jesse, van Gaal said: “Lingard’s competitor is Juan Mata and his competitor is also, for example, Ander Herrera or Wayne Rooney or, when he is played on the left, because he can also play on the left, his competitor was Memphis [Depay]. So it’s not easy to come in.
“He trained from the beginning, also in the United States of America, and maybe you remember his goal [against Barcelona]? He played very good in that match and trained very well. He has to wait for his moment and maybe his moment has arrived now.”
I’m absolutely delighted to see Lingard getting himself back into the team and making such a good impression because he’s Lancashire born and has spent his whole career at United.
There aren’t enough of those players around any more and we’re hoping his setbacks of injuries which have plagued his progress to date are now a thing of the past, so he can concentrate on developing as a player now under van Gaal.