Monday 26 September 2016

Lingard wants to prove himself

Published 22/06/2015 | 22:46

Jesse Lingard believes England Under-21s can now kick on
Jesse Lingard believes England Under-21s can now kick on

Jesse Lingard is determined to prove his worth for Manchester United after injury robbed him of the chance to impress Louis van Gaal.

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Having been farmed out on loan and developed physically, it looked like the 22-year-old would finally get a chance to shine at Old Trafford last season.

Van Gaal handed Lingard his debut in United's opening game of the campaign against Swansea, only for his afternoon to be cut short by an Ashley Williams tackle.

When the winger returned to the field six months later it was on loan at Derby in the Championship, making him all the more determined to add to his sole United appearance.

Lingard is certainly aiding his cause in the Czech Republic, where on Sunday he stylishly netted England's late winner against Sweden in the European Championship.

"I'm looking to stay at Man United and get some games under my belt there," Lingard said.

"I'll see what the boss says when I get back. I've always wanted to play for Man United and that's still my ambition.

"I was unlucky to get injured at the start of last season and I'll never know where I would be know if I hadn't got that injury.

"Scoring goals like this can only help. It gets your profile up and other teams see you as well as Man United. It can only be good for me.

"I kept in contact with Louis Van Gaal last season and spoke to the Under-21 manager a lot. He was guiding me and giving me confidence."

Lingard is likely to have another chance to impress on Wednesday when the Young Lions take on Italy in their final Group B match.

The winger was replaced in the starting line-up against Sweden despite impressing in the defeat to Portugal, but could again find himself starting from the outset after his game-changing display and Alex Pritchard's injury.

"You're always disappointed not to start for your country, but that's the gaffer's decision," Lingard said.

"I knew I had to make an impact as soon as I came on the pitch and luckily I did. Getting the win is massive for us, and says a lot about our team spirit.

"It's up to the gaffer who starts. He knows what he's doing and we respect his opinion, but obviously I'm hoping to start."

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