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Jesse Lingard leaving: Manchester United star closer to January exit to West Ham

Jesse Lingard leaving
(Image credit: PA)

Jesse Lingard leaving Manchester United could happen as soon as January - with West Ham eyeing the situation, according to reports.

The England international is out of contract at Old Trafford next summer and is not expected to be offered an extension.

Lingard impressed on loan at West Ham in the second half of last term, but Manchester United opted against selling him to the Hammers last summer.

That decision seemed to indicate they had plans to make use of Lingard this season, but the attacking midfielder has found game time hard to come by.

He has been restricted to five substitute appearances in the Premier League totalling just 63 minutes.

Lingard has not started a game in the Champions League either, and was an unused substitute for Saturday's 2-0 defeat by Manchester City.

A lack of opportunities has convinced the 28-year-old to leave Old Trafford in the winter window, especially as he wants to play at the 2022 World Cup.

Eurosport reports that West Ham are weighing up a January swoop for their former loanee, who scored nine Premier League goals and provided four assists for David Moyes' side last time out.

Lingard enjoyed his spell at the London Stadium and has been impressed by West Ham's start to the current campaign.

The Hammers are fourth in the Premier League table and hold a three-point lead over Manchester United, despite having played one fewer game at the time of writing.

Newcastle have also been linked with a move for Lingard, but the suggestions are that he would prefer a return to east London.

There could also be offers from abroad, particularly as the 28-year-old will be available for a cut-price fee as he nears the end of his contract.

Moyes will hope to convince the West Ham board to fund a move for Lingard, who could help to keep the club in the hunt for the top four.

As for Manchester United, it is mystifying why they did not cash in on the England international last summer if they had no intention of using him this season.

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