Barcelona and AC Milan are said to be leading the way in securing the transfer of Jesse Lingard if he becomes a free agent next summer.
The 28-year-old midfielder declined a new Manchester United contract offer last month.
Lingard has been reduced to a sub impact at United
Lingard’s future remains uncertain and the playmaker is exploring options that will ensure more playing time.
United’s summer signings Cristiano Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho have limited his playing time under manager Ole Gunnar Solksjaer.
He was impressive on loan in the second half of last season at West Ham, scoring nine goals in 16 appearances.
According to the Daily Mail, Barcelona and AC Milan both want to start pre-contractual negotiations in January.
Former West Ham star Trevor Sinclair recently asked why Lingard hasn’t signed for the Hammers permanently.
Lingard has returned to his best at West Ham
“If he doesn’t reassure them and sign a new deal, that means he’s not ambitious as a player,” he told talkSPORT.
“I’m a little confused that he doesn’t want to sign for West Ham permanently.
“He was loved there and was the main man. He played once for Manchester United in 2021, but played 16 times for West Ham and came in in double digits for goals and back for the England squad.
“Why wouldn’t you want to be in this environment? “
Lingard has made more starts for England than for his club this season, starting just once for United when they exit the Carabao Cup at West Ham.
The academy graduate missed the opportunity to play the Euro last summer.
Lingard remains a key part of England’s plans
He’s working hard like never before to be part of England manager Gareth Southgate’s plan ahead of the World Cup next year.
As it stands, the United midfielder will see the remainder of his contract which could end his 20-year association with the club.
Lingard has won four major trophies at the club, including a goal in the FA Cup and League Cup final, as well as a goal in their 2-1 win over Leicester in the 2016 Community Shield.
He also helped United win their last trophy four years ago, winning the Europa League under the guidance of former manager Jose Mourinho.
He can open discussions with foreign clubs from January and the final decision is up to him on the direction of his playing career.
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