Man United fans cheer Lingard sub v Anderlecht

Jesse Lingard joined Manchester United at the age of eight, and the Englishman progressed through the various youth teams at Old Trafford before establishing himself as a first-team player with the 20-time English champions.

Earlier this month, the 24-year-old signed a new four-year contract at Man United, where he will reportedly pick up wages in the region of £100,000-a-week.

The four-time England international has become known for scoring in cup finals at Wembley in recent seasons, but his overall contribution to Man United, particularly on a regular basis, has long been questioned by the club’s supporters.

Lingard seems to be a favourite of Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho, however, and he was once again in the XI for Thursday night’s Europa League quarter-final first leg away to Anderlecht.

The winger actually had some bright moments in the first 45 minutes, but he was substituted in the 62nd minute of the European tie, with Anthony Martial entering the field.

Five goals in 31 appearances during the 2016-17 campaign suggests that it has been a decent season for Lingard, but he continues to attract criticism on social media, and his withdrawal against Anderlecht was met with praise by a selection of Man United supporters.

There are some that believe the home-grown talent should be given breathing space at Old Trafford, but the other argument is that the winger will never quite be good enough to become a key player at the Theatre of Dreams.

The chances are that Lingard will be in the Man United team for Sunday’s Premier League game with Chelsea, although it seems even a positive performance against the table-toppers would not change the minds of his critics…