You cant ask for more on your debut for your new club - even Roy of the Rovers wouldn’t have scored four goals - but that is just what Jesse Lingard did on his debut
for Birmingham City in their 4-1 thrashing of Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.
Birmingham have endured their worst start for 25 years but this seemed to have been
forgotten once the twenty year old Lingard had fired a 13 minute first half hat-trick. No matter how woeful Sheffield Wednesday were and no matter where his career may end up you can never take an achievement such as this away from him.
At first glance, Manchester United seem to have unearthed another star in the making. Their decision to loan him out for a month appears to be a good one - there is no substitute for playing competitive league football.
Lingard has yet to make his Premier League debut for United but made a promising impact on the club's pre-season tour, scoring four goals in four games. He showed his potential in these games and this may have prompted manager David Moyes to just loan the youngster out for a month. Has Moyes therefore got plans to include the youngster in his first team squad sooner rather than later?
Lingard, an attacking midfielder, was loaned to Leicester City last season but failed to find the net in his five appearances. However, I am sure he will have learned a lot from his first experience of Championship football, certainly more than if he was playing reserve team football, even at a club like United.
Unearthing talent is crucial for teams these days, particularly with the huge transfer fees demanded for players. If a club can unearth stars through their own academy, it can save them a fortune in the long run. United have a great history of unearthing talented players. Can Lingard follow in the footsteps of youth team graduates such as David Beckham, Gary Neville, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes?
Lingard will now need to move on from the hype surrounding his debut and continue to
develop his career in the right manner. All too often players think they have
made it when they have not and eventually disappear from the game with regrets.
Football can be ruthless and Lingard has a lot of hard work ahead of him. This is just
the start of what could be a flourishing career but t is good to see a young
English player making an impact. Let's just hope he realises his undoubted potential.
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