Manchester United are soon finally coming back to action, on Friday night, in the FA Cup fourth round match. The Red Devils will be hosting Middlesbrough at Old Trafford, in a match that could see Ralf Rangnick’s side progress further in the oldest football competition and hopefully start a decent run towards the latter stages.
Rangnick’s team has been without action for almost two weeks now, following the winter break in the Premier League, but in the meantime, the other important thing was the ending of the January transfer window. Man United have made four deals during the past month and all four were outwards deals – four players were loaned out. But amongst them, there was no Jesse Lingard to be seen, despite many expectations for that move to materialize. So what happened? WHy the 29-year-old Englishman has stayed at Old Trafford yet again?
Lingard Is Unhappy For Staying
Man United will have Jesse Lingard as part of the squad for the remainder of the season, although not many have expected that to happen. Several clubs were interested in the player that could have improved all of them. First there were West Ham and Tottenham, but United were unwilling to let him go to the teams which were seen as rivals for the Champions League spots. Then came Newcastle United, who could have both used Lingard in their relegation fight and also pay United what the Devils were wanting to get from such a deal. So when things broke down and Man United did not allow this deal to happen, it was only obvious Lingard was going to be unhappy.
Some reports in the media suggested that Lingard would now be out of the squad for a few days and Rangnick suggested something similar, as Lingard was apparently ‘in need of refreshing his mind’. However, things made a big turn on Thursday night, when Lingard basically went against Rangnick’s words with his post on his Twitter profile.
Lingard said that the club advised him to have time off due to personal reasons, claiming that his head is clear and that he will always be professional when called upon, ready to give 100 percent for the club.
Greenwood Situation Influenced United’s Decision
In these few days since the end of the January transfer window, many were surprised Man United did not let Lingard leave on loan, but there were reports in several media outlets about why the club made such a decision. They were citing Man United’s unwillingness to let Lingard go due to Mason Greenwood’s situation. The youngster has been suspended from all club activities, after he was arrested on a string of offenses, which include rape and threats to kill. Considering Greenwood will probably never play for Man United again, especially not this season, United felt that letting Lingard go would leave Man United exposed in attacking positions. Therefore, keeping Lingard was what the club felt is necessary, but it still does not seem that Lingard will be getting too much playing time. Let’s see what happens now…