Former Premier League man Darren Bent has claimed West Ham United loanee Jesse Lingard could play his way into the England squad.
Given how little he was playing whilst at Manchester United, the chances of him making it into the England squad for this summer’s European Championships were going to be pretty slim, to say the least. But now at West Ham and after the brilliant start he has made in east London, things are looking up.
Indeed, Bent, as heard on the TalkSPORT Daily Podcast, says that he has put himself right into the mix to be a part of Gareth Southgate’s team once again, despite not having played since the Nations League finals in 2019.
He said: “He’s certainly given himself a chance, an outside chance of getting himself back into the England squad because he’s on the pitch playing really, really well. You never know, he’s never really let Gareth Southgate down. He’s got the trust of the manager. And to me, when I watch him play now, Jesse Lingard, he looks more motivated than ever.
“And you have to say on current form number tens, he’s got to be in the discussion because I hope we finally see an England manager pick players on form rather than reputation.”
Are you excited by Lingard's loan move to West Ham?
TIF Thoughts on Darren Bent’s comments about Jesse Lingard and the England squad…
Bent is certainly right that if he keeps up his form at the London Stadium – which has seen him rocket to the top of their performance rankings (as per WhoScored) – then he could cause Southgate a few headaches when it comes to selection, but they would be good headaches to have.
This loan could end up being a match made in heaven.
Lingard has been given a chance to showcase his talent and prove to not just the England boss, but also those at Manchester United, that he still could have a future at Old Trafford. Meanwhile, West Ham United have got themselves a player motivated to help himself, and as a result, help them get over the line when it comes to their hunt for a European place.
It’s a move that could potentially go down as a ‘win-win’ for both player and club.