Former England manager Glenn Hoddle feels Jesse Lingard has already become indispensable for West Ham during his short stint at the club.
Lingard, 28, penned a six-month loan deal with the Hammers in January this year. He had not made a single Premier League appearances for Manchester United during the first half of the season.
But the forward has been a regular starter for David Moyes’s side, with seven top-flight outings to date. He has scored five goals and looks to be rejuvenated in the East End.
Gareth Southgate has taken note, with Lingard recalled to the England squad for upcoming World Cup qualifiers. The Three Lions face San Marino, Albania and Poland and Lingard will hope to add to his 24 caps.
The former Brighton loan star is now playing with a smile on his face. And Hoddle believes that his form means that West Ham are not the same force without him in the ranks.
“I think Lingard is one that’s really come on. He scored a really good goal again, and he’s playing exceedingly well,” he told his podcast. “West Ham, you saw them come out of the game against United because he couldn’t play, because he’s on loan from there.
“And West Ham weren’t the same team without him, and he’s earned every part of the call-up that Gareth’s given him.”
Lingard pays tribute to West Ham colleagues
Lingard appeared to be drifting and a shadow of his former self at Old Trafford. He seemed destined for great things after becoming an England regular and playing at the 2018 World Cup.
But game time began to dwindle in 2018-2019, with only 19 starts while he started just nine top-flight games last term.
The Warrington-born ace scored just one league goal last season but has now rediscovered his scoring boots. And he was quick to thank his new team-mates for helping to revive what was a flagging career.
“It’s brilliant, and it’s about getting minutes and getting regular football and trying to do the best I can,” he told West Ham TV. “The team has helped me tremendously and I can’t thank the players and staff for welcoming me enough and it’s time to crack on now.
“We know how far we’ve come already, the team have been brilliant and, as long as we stick together as a team, we can go far this season.”
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