Lingard lifted by London high life

West Ham United's Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring the first goal against Wolverhampton Wanderers April 6, 2021. ― Reuters pic
West Ham United's Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring the first goal against Wolverhampton Wanderers April 6, 2021. ― Reuters pic

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LONDON, April 9 — Jesse Lingard said a change in environment and shouldering off-field responsibilities were key reasons behind his revival during his loan spell at West Ham United.

Playing rarely for his club Manchester United, Lingard joined West Ham in January, scoring six goals and providing four assists to lift the London club to fourth in the table on 52 points with eight games of the season left.

The 28-year-old Lingard earned an England recall after a two-year absence for their recent World Cup qualifiers and has put himself in contention for a spot in Gareth Southgate’s squad for this year’s European Championship.

“I think environment is a big thing,” Lingard told global sports broadcaster beIN SPORTS. “My house in Manchester is low down, you go down into the kitchen, it’s dark and in like a bunker.

“You being in that environment week in, week out, you know nothing else.

“Since I’ve moved to London I’m in an apartment where I’m high, there’s lots of light, I can see all the buildings in London, it makes you more bright and fresh.”

Lingard said off-field issues, including his mother’s battle with depression, had impacted his form at Old Trafford but overcoming such adversities had made him a better player.

“It makes you more mature and to take more responsibility for yourself and others and that’s what I’ve been doing,” he added.

“The person off the pitch carries onto the pitch and you become that person on the pitch. When I was down and low it felt like I wasn’t even playing games and the game was passing me by, it was awful.

“Awful for your family to see. Awful for your family to come and watch games and know ‘that’s not Jesse Lingard,’ it’s upsetting for them as well as me.” — Reuters

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