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Jesse Lingard laments lack of Manchester United opportunities under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Jesse Lingard
(Image credit: PA)

Jesse Lingard says he joined West Ham on loan because he was not given enough opportunities at Manchester United.

Lingard joined David Moyes’ squad in the January transfer window after slipping down the pecking order at Old Trafford.

The former England international did not make a single Premier League appearance for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side in the first half of the season.

His last start for the Red Devils came on New Year’s Day 2020 in a 2-0 defeat by Arsenal.

And Lingard believes he was not given a fair crack of the whip after the Premier League resumed in June following the first nationwide lockdown.

“First and foremost I'm here to play, win and help the team, so hopefully I can do that and we'll see where we're at come the end of the season,” he told BT Sport.

"It's about playing with a smile on my face and enjoying my football and getting back to the old Jesse. 

"During the lockdown, I recapped my best moments playing football – the season under Jose [Mourinho] where I scored all of those goals and went to the World Cup and the season when Ole came in and I started well.

"I started getting that fire in my belly and drive again to go and kick on because it would have been easy for me to fall off and take the easy option out, but a person like me who's been through a lot and knows the game, I can't just give it up like and I'll always go out with a fight. 

"I came back one of the strongest and fittest (in the United squad) after the lockdown and I didn't get my chance that I was waiting on but the whole time I was there and not playing I was doing extra training and keeping on top of my fitness for when the time was right. 

"So for me, it's about working hard and staying dedicated and I went back to basics."

West Ham beat Sheffield United on Monday to climb to fifth in the Premier League table.

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