Gary Neville claims Jesse Lingard does have a future at Manchester United but explains why a return to his boyhood club may not be want the forward wants.
The 28-year-old inspired West Ham to a 3-2 win over Wolves on Monday to take David Moyes’ side above Chelsea into fourth place.
Lingard has barely played for United for the last two seasons having been deemed surplus to requirements by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
But his stunning form for West Ham – which has seen him notch six goals and four assists in eight games under Moyes – has earned him a recall to Gareth Southgate’s England squad and has led to speculation as to whether he should be part of Solskjaer’s plans at United.
After a goal and assist against Wolves, Neville was asked if he would have Lingard back at Old Trafford.
“It depends on what grounds,” Neville replied.
“If Jesse wants to play, which he does want to play, you can see, then he’s going to need to leave.
“Because he’s not going to play every single week I suspect in a Manchester United team that’s trying to get to second or first in the league.
“But if he’s willing to go back there and compete and be a player that, Daniel James has come in for the last few weeks and he’s out of the team again, be that type of player who’s a bit in and out.
“There’s no doubt he can play for Manchester United but he’d have to be in that role.”
It was a night of heated debate in the Monday Night Football studio, with Neville calling out “gobsh*te” Jamie Carragher in the car park after their punditry duties had come to an end.
Neville said: “Well… I can’t believe what I’ve just been through.
“I’ve been exposed to the… Scouse mafia in full flow. I’ve delivered three excellent bits of punditry tonight that have basically been rubbished by gobsh*te here.”
On Carrragher’s England selection, Neville added: “He’s picked three right-backs, nine defenders, Jordan Henderson and Declan Rice in midfield and wants to dominate possession!
“Seriously, can you please explain how you’re going to do that?
“You think we can dominate possession with five defenders, and Rice and Henderson?”
Carragher replied, before they scarpered for their hotel.