Jesse Lingard has completed his loan move from Manchester United to West Ham until the end of the season.
The 28-year-old has been a peripheral figure at Old Trafford throughout 2020/21, and is yet to feature in the Premier League. He's been restricted to just 179 minutes of action in cup competitions, and last played for United in their FA Cup third round win over Watford at the beginning of the month.
Talk of a loan move away surfaced at the beginning of January, and after weeks of speculation it's West Ham who have managed to snare Lingard on a temporary deal until the end of the season.
Confirming his arrival on their official website, Lingard told West Ham TV: “I’m excited. It’s another new chapter in my life. Nothing is guaranteed but I’ve come here to work hard and help the team and bring my experience. That’s the main aim. I just want to enjoy my football and get back playing again and get my feet back on the pitch.
"There were lots of clubs involved but, for me personally, I felt this was the right move. I’ve obviously had a previous relationship with the manager as he was at Man U and I’ve played under him before, so he knows my qualities and what I can bring to the team. I know a couple of the players as well – I know Dec [Rice] very well from the England side – and I feel I can really settle in here quickly.”
“It’s important that a player and manager have a good relationship. He’s got really good morals, he gets his team working hard and I’ve had a chat with him already and there are no guarantees – it’s down to me to put the work in and put the graft in, to get into the team and play well week-in, week-out.”
“I can’t wait to show [the West Ham fans] what I’ve got in store. I’m excited and I want to help the team push up the table as far as they can.”
West Ham manager David Moyes, who worked with Lingard during his time at Old Trafford, added: "I've seen him play as a young boy, when he was still a wide player on the right, and I've seen him play off the left. He's played for England as a No10, he's played for England as a No8, and I actually think if we needed him as a False 9, he could do that as well.
"We're bringing in that versatility, I've wanted to try to get an energetic team at the moment and Jesse has been known for his work-rate and effort, so I think he'll fit in nicely with what we've got.
"I hope he brings us a little bit of quality too, and a winning mentality from Manchester United."
Earlier on Friday, United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hinted that he expects Lingard to return to the club ahead of next season, when he will heading into the final year of his contract. That is despite West Ham's best efforts to insert an option or obligation to buy clause into his loan deal.
"'We want Jesse to come back here revitalised and having shown at West Ham how good a player he is," Solskjaer told his pre-match press conference ahead of Sunday's game with Arsenal (via MailOnline Sport). "He's just been unfortunate with a couple of issues, some periods he had to stay away from us with COVID, isolation and close contact.
'[The] rest of the team has done well, little to no injuries, not forced his way into the team - [he can] come back and show he's a Manchester United player through and through."
Lingard's move to the London Stadium is an opportunity to get his stalling career back on track, and seems to be an one that he's relishing if his recent social media posts are anything to go by. The former FA Cup final winning goalscorer posted a picture of his bags packed late on Thursday, accompanied by a caption confirming his impending arrival in the capital.