Jesse Lingard has decided against returning to Manchester United at the end of this season and will push for a permanent move to West Ham.
The Academy graduate did not feature in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s plans in the earlier part of the season, being limited to just a handful of cup games before being snapped up on loan by the Hammers in January.
Since then his form has been exceptional. The 28-year-old has scored nine goals and registered four assists in just 11 games. He has also been called back into the England squad and has even been thriving in the centre-forward role for David Moyes, a position in which he had only ever played four times before.
And according to Eurosport, Lingard is enjoying himself so much in London that he has chosen to stay rather than return to Old Trafford.
‘Jesse Lingard is almost certain to push for a permanent move from Manchester United this summer,’ the outlet says.
‘His loan agreement with West Ham United ends after this season but it is understood his new lease of life in London is convincing him that it might be time to leave Old Trafford for good.
‘Lingard was frustrated and unimpressed by the lack of faith Ole Gunnar Solskjaer showed in him before letting him out on loan in January.
‘West Ham have tried to accelerate a decision from United over a full-time move, given his brilliant form, but United do not want to make a decision until the summer. West Ham know he is happy at the club and are convinced that if they qualify for Europe he will be happy to explore a long stay.’
Moyes has already made it clear that he would like to keep Lingard at the club but the price tag could be the only stumbling block. Transfermarkt.com values him at just £13 million and while the Hammers would probably stretch to nearer £20 million, that could still fall short of United’s valuation, which is believed to be closer to £30 million.
United’s interest in the Hammers’ holding midfielder Declan Rice could provide a solution if a player-plus-cash deal can be agreed.