Lingard says it's his time to step up

Jesse Lingard has established himself in the starting line-up in the ongoing season which have been capped with impressive performances. He has scored seven goals in his last 10 appearances across competitions.

Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring a goal against Everton at Goodison Park in the Premier League.   -  AFP

Manchester United's Jesse Lingard seems to be fulfilling the words of his former manager Sir Alex Ferguson.

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Ferguson, who managed the Old Trafford outfit for a record 26 years, claimed back in 2012 that the academy graduate would go onto fulfill his promise at the age of 25.

Lingard, 25, has established himself in the starting line-up in the ongoing season under Jose Mourinho and he has capped that with impressive performances. The England international has scored seven goals in his last 10 appearances across competitions, which includes strikes at Arsenal and Everton.

 

The attacking midfielder believes that its his time to step up after hardening himself with loan spells at Leicester City, Birmingham City, Brighton and Hove Albion, and Derby County.

"I have realised that it's my time now and I have to really step up. It's been a long time coming. At the start of the season, I set up my own objective with a target on my mind with respect to goals. I am on the right path and if I keep going I will hopefully hit that," Lingard told PremierLeague.com.

His upturn in goal-scoring form has earned him the nickname 'Messi Lingard' after the Barcelona great Lionel Messi. Of the comparison, "(Laughs).. Messi is one of the best players in the world so it's good for your confidence but I am my own player. As long as I get on my team that's all that matters."

United currently stands second in the Premier League table, 12 points behind leader Manchester City. The club has had to deal with a lot of injuries to its defensive unit with the likes of Eric Bailly, Antonio Valencia, Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo being out of the reckoning through various stages of the season.

"We have had a lot (injuries) but we have a good strength in depth in the squad. If one defender gets injured, we can always replace him. Everyone's worked hard at the back. It (the defence) starts with the whole team and it starts up front as well."

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