Tottenham legend questions Man United midfielder despite enormous talent

Garth Crooks has some advice for Manchester United midfielder Jesse Lingard

Jesse Lingard has enormous talent but has to improve his desire in the Manchester United side, according to Garth Crooks.

The England international started his eighth Premier League game of the 2016-17 season under new manager Jose Mourinho at The Hawthorns on Saturday afternoon.

Lingard provided the cross for Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s opening goal in their 2-0 win against the Baggies as the Red Devils recorded a third successive top-flight win.

The 24-year-old’s assist was his second of the 2016-17 season after a stuttering start to life under his new boss following Mourinho’s appointment in May.

Lingard scored four times in 25 Premier League games last term under Louis van Gaal in his breakthrough season at Old Trafford.

Writing in his BBC Sport column, former Tottenham forward Crooks explained what Lingard needs to do to convince his doubters at Manchester United.

“I think we have all been waiting for Jesse Lingard to continue his progression for some time. We have seen flashes of his talents but nothing over a sustained period,” Crooks said.

“And yet in the game against West Brom, Lingard played like a grown-up looking to actively hurt the opposition at every opportunity as opposed to appearing to simply enjoy the game.

“Lingard clearly has enormous ability but I am not yet totally convinced about his desire. He is playing with some amazing players. He must make it tell while he has the chance. I have seen lots of young promising players disappear from Old Trafford without a trace.”

Manchester United are in sixth place in the Premier League table but four points adrift of fourth-placed Arsenal in the race to finish in the top four.

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