Manchester United youngster tells MUTV he will fight Mata and Rooney for starting place

Inside Old Trafford

Jesse Lingard told MUTV he will back his ability in order to get back into the starting line-up at Old Trafford

Manchester United midfielder Jesse Lingard told MUTV that he is closing in on full-fitness and will fight Juan Mata and Wayne Rooney for a starting role at Old Trafford

On Tuesday night, Lingard made only his second start for the United Under-21 side as he impressed in the 2-1 victory over rivals Liverpool in front of a crowd containing a little over 5,000 spectators.

The 22-year-old started on the left side of an attacking trio, which contained Nick Powell and Saido Janko, and aided the young Red Devils to an impressive victory.

After the match, the former Brighton and Hove Albion loanee was in high spirits and told MUTV how he hopes to break into the starting line-up at Old Trafford.

‘’I thought the boss didn’t want to rush me and now I feel it’s the right time to get back playing,’’ said Lingard.

‘’Obviously, Juan [Mata] plays there and Wazza [Wayne Rooney] can play there as well,’’ added the England Under-21 midfielder, referring to the role behind the strikers.

‘’But I’ll keep doing in training what I do, day in and day out, and back my ability.’’

According to the Birmingham Mail, Wolverhampton Wanderers have been keeping an eye on the player’s situation with the hope of a loan bid, but judging by his comments, he still remains on Louis van Gaal’s radar.

In the first game of the season, the attack minded midfielder was a shock starter for United at right wing-back but got injured midway into the first-half and has been out ever since.

If Lingard can play himself into Van Gaal’s plans once again, considering the options he has at his disposal, it will be a very impressive achievement. However, the smart money would be on the United No. 35 heading out on loan either to a Premier League side or a top level Championship club.

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch