David Moyes remains hopeful that West Ham can keep Jesse Lingard next season after admitting he has exceeded expectations.
Lingard joined the Hammers on loan in January after being frozen out at Manchester United. His impact has been astonishing, with nine goals and three assists from 13 games. That form has put him back in England contention ahead of Euro 2020. He was also named Premier League player of the month for April.
“It is fully deserved; his performances have been really good,” Moyes said. “He has excelled and probably done better than we hoped when we first brought him in.
“But you must not forget Jesse has joined a good team and a team that was playing well and near the top of the league. So hopefully we have helped Jesse as well.”
The attention has long since turned to Lingard’s future, as there is no option to buy in his loan deal. But that doesn’t mean West Ham won’t try.
Man Utd only have him under contract until 2022, so may have to sell him this summer. In that event, West Ham would be a prime suitor – but there are doubts if they can afford him.
“I am not actually sure how realistic it is,” Moyes said. “Obviously, I think Jesse has enjoyed himself, I hope he has…
“We have enjoyed having him and he is Manchester United’s player so they can decide what to do with him – and if they want to let him go then let’s hope he would consider us as one of his options.
“We have enjoyed having him and I am sure he has enjoyed being here as well. He is getting a lot of accolades and is back in the England squad.
“I hope he goes on to make the Euros and in time we will find out if Jesse is going to be a Manchester United player or if he will play for somebody else.”
Moyes asks no questions over Man Utd lineup
There was some controversy this week in the top-four race when Man Utd made 10 changes to their lineup for their game against Leicester.
It was understandable given their schedule, but it led to Leicester winning. In turn, that has made West Ham’s pursuit of a top-four place harder.
But Moyes has no hard feelings towards his former club for the decisions they made.
“Manchester United can do whatever they want,” he said. “Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] can do whatever he wants with his team.
“I think it is the Premier League who people should be asking these questions, not me or anybody else.”