Jesse Lingard has been a revelation since joining West Ham on loan from Manchester United in the January transfer window. The Englishman was a controversial signing at the time as many fans weren’t convinced by his ability, especially as he had not played a single minute in the Premier League this season.
However, since stepping onto the field for West Ham, Lingard has proved his doubters wrong and rejuvenated his career in the process. Due to his great performances in claret and blue, it would be safe to assume that the club will be looking to acquire his services on a permanent basis in the summer.
Lingard may only have one more year left on his manchester united contract, but his asking price will rise with each stunning performance. At the moment, it is believed to be £20 million. That figure does seem steep for the Hammers. If that price is matched, Lingard would be in the top ten most expensive West Ham players of all time.
West Ham look set to have a busy transfer window and are likely to face competition from other clubs for Jesse Lingard if they aren’t quick.
David Moyes’ side are currently challenging for a place in the Champions League spots and will want to add depth to their squad in the summer if they qualify for European football. However, with the current financial restraints that COVID-19 have apparently put on the club, there may not be the biggest budget this summer.
Should West Ham match Lingard’s asking price?
The short answer is yes. It is expected that some fringe players will be sold or let go this summer. Fabian Balbuena, Andriy Yarmolenko, Winston Reid, Manuel Lanzini and Felipe Anderson could all be moved on to raise funds to bring players into the club. Considering the squad is already very small, it is paramount replacements are brought in.
Lingard would be able to replace Lanzini and Anderson’s roles immediately due to his ability to play in multiple positions. Arguably he would be an improvement on the duo if his current form persists next season.
Financially £20 million may seem like a large outlay for a player who is in the last season of his contract, but multiple factors should make Lingard more affordable. Player sales should be able to raise the needed money easily.
The additional prize money that the Hammers could receive for a high placed finish will be substantially more than what the club has been used too in recent years. Of course, there has been less match day revenue this season, but with most fans keeping hold of their season tickets, that should not affect the club too much.
Basically, there is little excuse not to sign Lingard on a permanent contract this summer. The only reason the club would avoid him is if they could get someone who is better and younger. Honestly though, with five-goal involvements in five games, that is not likely.