Jesse Lingard has put his sensational West Ham form down to being consistently selected and able to get a run of games under his belt. The 28-year-old was so far down Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s pecking order at Manchester United that it had been more than a year since his last league start by the time of his move to West Ham. The England international is delighted with his form and finally being trusted with regular game times:
Jesse Lingard said: “It’s just consistency behind my form I think. Obviously, I hadn’t played much for the past two years, so to be playing week-in, week-out, and keeping up this form is great, but the team have helped me tremendously.”
Lingard opened the scoring against Wolves with a fabulous run and finish on Monday evening but the forward was modest when asked about his superb goal.
Jesse Lingard added: “Michail [Antonio’s] run was perfect. It was two-v-two and we work on things like that in training. He took a defender away and I saw a clear gap to go into with just me and the goalkeeper left.”
Lingard did the rest, racing into the space Antonio had created before delicately finishing over the onrushing Rui Patricio in goal. The Hammers added two more before the 40th minute but faced a nervy end to the game following two Wolves strikes – a reminder to West Ham following their surrender of a three-goal lead against Arsenal that concentration is key.
Jesse Lingard said: “We need to maintain our focus in each game. We’ve got a tough run of fixtures but the lads are ready and we’ll prepare for the next game. There’s always room to improve. It’s a great victory but there are things to take from this game, positive and negative, and we’ll learn from that. It was a tough game and we had to work hard for the three points. We kept at it – it could have been another Arsenal situation conceding before half-time – but the lads kept their focus and concentration throughout the 90 minutes. It was just a lack of concentration at the end of the first half but we came out in the second half a little bit better. They dominated most of the play but it was about us managing the game.”
Speaking after the match, Hammers manager David Moyes heaped praise on Lingard for his performance, something he does not do too often, preferring to focus on the collective rather than the individual. However, such was the England internationals impact Moyes could not help himself
David Moyes said: “He showed a bit of old-fashioned dribbling and used his speed to get away from people. I said to him at the end that he’s made a big difference and I don’t give praise too easily, but I certainly gave it to Jesse tonight.”
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