Jesse Lingard amazed fans and critics alike on Sunday when his late strike won the match for Manchester United against West Ham.
Before his loan spell at the Hammers last January, Lingard had failed to play a single minute in the Premier League that season.
However, the 28 year old impressed in East London, scoring 9 goals in 16 appearances and helping them to bag a place in Europe.
The London club in turn assisted Lingard in rebuilding his confidence and form. The warm reception by the home fans and his reluctance to celebrate his winner were a telling sign of the mutual respect and gratitude from club and player.
It paints a much bigger picture for the United academy graduate and his boyhood club.
After his stray pass on Tuesday night in the Champions League gave Young Boys the victory, Lingard’s role in the club was thrown into question once again.
However, coming on as a sub this past weekend, he silenced critics and showed his mental resilience.
It was his second goal in just 45 minutes of game time this season.
Is Lingard becoming United’s super-sub or does he deserve something more perhaps?
Despite Solskjaer’s wealth of attacking talent, the quality of Lingard’s strike and clear impact he can exact upon a game so quickly is making it impossible for people to ignore him.
Solskjaer commented: “He showed his qualities, he’s got back into the England squad and he’s scoring goals for England. We really want to see the best of Jesse this season, we support him and we hope to keep him here with us. He’s a Red through and through.”
His decision to stay at United and not move to the London Stadium on a more permanent basis sounded absurd just a few weeks ago.
Now, with two world class goals under his belt, Lingard is showing why he deserves to stay at United.
How long he will remain a Red is in doubt though as his contract expires at the end of the season and so far he has turned down offers of a new contract.
Will these strikes get him more game time at United? Will more game time persuade him to stay? For now it appears Lingard and Solskjaer are happy to take it one game at a time.