Jesse Lingard was set to make his claim for Manchester United’s first team last season but, after coming on for 27 minutes in United’s opening game against Swansea; he sustained a bad knee injury.
To aid his recovery, the English winger was sent out on loan to Derby County. Prior to this he had also spent spells away at Brighton & Hove Albion, Birmingham City and Leicester City.
Louis van Gaal now wants him in his squad.
He came on as a half time substitute for Juan Mata, in Manchester United’s 3-0 win over Everton.
Speaking to reporters, the 22 year old Englishman has stated how grateful he is for the influence of Wayne Rooney.
“He might not seem it but he’s a bubbly character.”
“He goes to each group like the foreigners and youngsters and has chats with everybody and tries to help everyone.”
“He’s a world-class player. We see it in training every day. He’s got goals – he’s always got goals. He’s the captain and he leads the team. He sets a great example and I follow him.”
“I see him as a friend now. I’ve been around him most years coming through the ranks. When I was in the Under-18s I started mixing with the first team and I saw him about. Even then he still helped me along the way as he does now.”
“We have lots of quality players but he’s scored a lot of goals for the club and has helped Manchester United get where we are today.”
During pre-season, Lingard featured on the right wing for Manchester United’s second string team which would commonly come on in the second half. It was heavily rumoured that the talented youngster would be loaned out this season, but van Gaal wanted him in his team.
“The manager told me he wanted me to stay [at the start of the season] and could see me playing games this season. I think Saturday won’t do me any harm.”
“He trusts me and I have to pay him back by playing well.”
Jesse Lingard is expected to be taken Moscow for Manchester United’s next Champions League group stage game.