Lingard revitalised his career last season on loan at West Ham, making 16 appearances and recording nine goals and five assists.
This form saw him come within a whisker of making the England squad for the European Championships, something that was inconceivable a few months prior.
After rumours persisted all summer that a return to The London Stadium was on the cards, the Hammers eventually spent around £25 million on Croatian midfielder Nikola Vlasic instead.
Neville had the following to say to Sky Sports:
“I would actually have thought that a couple more players at Manchester United [would have left]. I’m disappointed for Jesse Lingard that he’s not left Manchester United.”
“He’ll get a few games, he’ll get moments on the pitch, he’ll contribute, but I think he had something going at West Ham last year that meant Jesse Lingard in his own right was standing up as a really good player.”
“To go back to being a squad player again I think, for me, is disappointing. I think you sometimes have to sort of fly the nest and go. I thought he’d already done that with what he did last year.”
West Ham’s interest was no secret and David Moyes’ assistant, Stuart Pearce, said the following to Talk Sport:
“We would like him to come and join us. That has been an open secret. He was wonderful last year.”
“He’s a special lad and was very good around the players – the players really like him, his ability shone out last year and gave us a great option in our squad.”
While he offers brilliant depth, it does seem a move for Jesse at this point of his career would have been the best option for all involved.