England manager Gareth Southgate was hugely delighted for Manchester United forward Jesse Lingard after he found the scoresheet in the 1-0 friendly win over the Netherlands on Friday night.
The United graduate has been a regular pick in Southgate’s squads of late, and he managed to make his chance count against the Dutch, where he scored his maiden international goal in a man of the match display.
Southgate has previously worked with Lingard at the Under 21 level and he was clearly impressed with the 25-year-old’s finishing ability, which has improved over the course of his playing career.
“I’m delighted for Jesse. He’s a player we’ve worked with for three or four years from the Under 21s and this year he is starting to finish the chances,” Southgate was quoted as saying by The Express.
Lingard has had a strong season with Manchester United, having reached double figures with 13 goals, and this has earned him a regular starting role, unlike in previous times, where he was used in a rotation policy.
The attacker can be frustrating at times with the final product, but he has made valuable efforts this term to the point that he may at least secure a spot with England for the summer World Cup.
Nonetheless, he needs to maintain his run of form through the coming months, if he is to stake a claim for a starting spot in Russia ahead of Tottenham’s Dele Alli, who was on the bench last week.