Lingard is in Gareth Southgate’s squad for the matches against Bulgaria and Kosovo.
Lingard has failed to score or assist in a Premier League match in 2019 for Manchester United, but England boss Southgate has spoken of his belief in the 26-year-old.
“Jesse Lingard should be nowhere near that England squad, nowhere near,” Groves told talkSPORT.
“He must have bruises all over his body where he’s pinching himself regularly, because he shouldn’t be in the squad.
“Managers always have their favourites.
“Jesse Lingard hasn’t scored or made an assist [in the Premier League] since December for Manchester United.
“That’s a long time, when you’re playing for one of the top clubs in the country by the way. [Southgate] probably likes his work ethic doesn’t he, he likes his industry, he probably likes his liveliness.
“But, I’ll go back to my point, on current form, and [Southgate’s] always said about the way you play for your clubs and that’s why people have been left out – be consistent.
“I wouldn’t say [Lingard’s] set the world alight [playing for England], he’s been okay.”
Chelsea’s Mason Mount, Leicester’s James Maddison and Aston Villa defender Tyrone Mings are all vying for their first senior caps.