Solskjaer has the last laugh after Jesse Lingard proves his point with dig

It's hard to imagine that Jesse Lingard could have done more to save his Manchester United career.

The midfielder has been a man on a mission on loan at West Ham as he almost fired the Hammers to a top-four finish.

Lingard has produced arguably the best form of his career adding nine goals in 14 games, all of them coming in his first 10 appearances for the Londoners as he looks set for a Euro 2020 call-up.

But it's still not been enough for Man Utd to view him as a part of their future as they have reportedly decided to cash in on the Englishman this summer, according to The Athletic.

The Reds are hoping to use him as a makeweight for one of their summer targets and the best chance he returns to West Ham is through a swap deal with Declan Rice.

But United won't struggle to find a suitor for Lingard if they decide to go down the cash-only route due to his scintillating form since the turn of the year.

Lingard's form was below par under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and he was largely surplus to requirements so perhaps the club's mind was made up regardless of how he fared in London.

Or with Lingard's stock at its highest and United looking to shell out around £80m for Jadon Sancho in the upcoming window, there's a strong possibility they need to recoup some funds as clubs deal with the financial fallout of the pandemic.

But Lingard's parting shot at his parent club when he joined West Ham certainly didn't help matters as the playmaker took a subtle dig at United for not playing him despite coming back from lockdown as one of the 'strongest and fittest' in the dressing room.

He told BT Sport: "First and foremost I'm here to play, win and help the team, so hopefully I can do that and we'll see where we're at come the end of the season.

"It's about playing with a smile on my face and enjoying my football and getting back to the old Jesse.

"During the lockdown, I recapped my best moments playing football – the season under Jose [Mourinho] where I scored all of those goals and went to the World Cup and the season when Ole came in and I started well.

"I started getting that fire in my belly and drive again to go and kick on. It would have been easy for me to fall off and take the easy option out.

"But a person like me who's been through a lot and knows the game, I can't just give it up like and I'll always go out with a fight.

"I came back one of the strongest and fittest (in the Man Utd squad) after the lockdown and I didn't get my chance that I was waiting on. But the whole time I was there and not playing I was doing extra training and keeping on top of my fitness for when the time was right.

"So for me, it's about working hard and staying dedicated and I went back to basics."

Lingard might ultimately regret those comments if his wish was to stay at Old Trafford as Solskjaer looks set to have the last laugh.

But if that's not the case, he'll be spoilt for choice this summer as his spell at West Ham shows he is still a top player.

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