Jesse Lingard slams Man Utd and questions club ‘politics’ ahead of Old Trafford return
Jesse Lingard has opened up on the frustrating end to his Manchester United career.
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Former Manchester United star Jesse Lingard has hit out at his former club ahead of his return to Old Trafford.
Lingard left United after last season to join Nottingham Forest at the end of his contract, opting to run down his deal and move on to pastures new. But after 22 years at the club, the attacking midfielder left with a bitter taste in his mouth. Lingard had spent a portion of the 2020/21 season out on loan with West Ham, and he had the time of his life.
The 30-year-old scored nine times in 18 Premier League appearances for the Hammers, who were keen on keeping Lingard around full-time. The England international appeared to be open to the idea, especially with only one year remaining on his deal, but he was convinced that returning was the right thing to do, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer promising regular playing time.
But Solskjaer didn’t make it through the winter, and interim boss Ralf Rangnick didn’t serve Lingard any better. The midfielder made just 16 Premier League appearances and started only twice despite being available for every Premier League game. With that in mind, it was no surprise that Lingard decided to move, even if his decision to join newly promoted Nottingham Forest did raise some eyebrows.
And ahead of his return to Old Trafford to face United on Tuesday, Lingard spoke about the frustration of being overlooked in his final season at United.
“I don’t know why I wasn’t playing. I don’t know what the problem was, whether it was politics or whatever,” Lingard told the Telegraph. “I still haven’t got an answer to this day. I didn’t even ask. I’d rather that someone out of respect for me being there that long told me ‘this is why you’re not playing’, but I never got that.
“It was false promises. I was training hard and I was sharp, I was ready to play them games. When you’re working hard in training and don’t play at the end of it, it’s very frustrating.”