Jesse Lingard was delighted after scoring his first Manchester United goal, with the winger admitting he is “growing in confidence”.
Lingard scored his first Manchester United goal in his eighth appearance for the club on Saturday, curling an excellent effort beyond West Brom’s Boaz Myhill to send the Red Devils into a 1-0 lead, while Juan Mata’s late penalty helped United close out a deserved 2-0 victory.
After four separate loan spells at the start of his career, 22-year-old Lingard has been handed an opportunity under Louis van Gaal this season and he feels he is taking it.
Describing his first ever goal at Old Trafford, Lingard told United’s official website: “It was [a dream come true].
“I have been a bit rash with my finishing recently, but to be composed in that situation was good and I am glad it went in. It was a really happy moment for me in my career.
“Afterwards it was just pure happiness, especially with my family being here too,” he continued. “My mum, dad, brother and girlfriend were all in the crowd and they’re all United fans too – they’re all really proud of me.
“I’m definitely growing in confidence. The manager has put faith in me to start some really important games so my confidence is obviously sky high.
“My chance didn’t come for three months, so I had to be patient. I was in the stands for a few games so I had to work hard in training and I’ve got my rewards.
“Now I need to be consistent with my performances as I know the manager likes that from his players. If I can carry on like this then that will obviously be great for me.”
Van Gaal typically preached caution with Lingard however, saying that it is “too early” to contemplate a call-up to the England squad.
“I would say it is much too early,” said Van Gaal. “We have to wait to see if he is consistent because he is more or less the same age as Memphis Depay.
“We have to wait but I am very happy with his contribution up until now.”