We know how much it means to the fans, says West Ham star Jesse Lingard
- Credit: PA
You play well when you are enjoying your football – and Jesse Lingard is doing both in a West Ham United shirt.
The No11 made it three goals in four Premier League appearances for the Hammers with a superbly taken winner in Sunday’s 2-1 victory over Tottenham Hotspur.
The 28-year-old latched onto a loose touch by Spurs’ Davinson Sanchez before lashing an unstoppable left-foot drive past Hugo Lloris to secure three more points for the side he joined on loan from Manchester United at the end of January.
The goal was initially ruled out by an assistant’s flag for offside, but a VAR review showed no offence had been committed and Lingard was able to celebrate his goal for a second time – this time with his jubilant teammates.
Speaking to West Ham TV, Lingard was all smiles as he said: “It’s brilliant! The lads grafted and really worked hard for the three points. We were fully focused from the beginning and we started on the front foot, which was important, and we got the early goal which settled us down.
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“We knew it would be a tough game after that because Spurs are a good side, but we stayed compact in midfield and tried to create chances when we can, which is what we did.”
For Lingard, his goal was followed by an anxious wait as VAR official Darren England checked to see if the offside flag raised was valid, before awarding it.
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“It feels like sometimes you can’t celebrate any more as there are always decisions and VAR checking and everything, but we had to be patient and remain positive that the goal was going to be given and thankfully it was,” he reflected.
Lingard has been part of many Manchester United teams who have challenged at the top of the table, so how good does he think this West Ham side is?
“I think we’re really good. Obviously this season is one of the best seasons West Ham has ever had and I’ve come here to bring energy and I feel like the focus and mentality of the team to go on and win games like today’s has been tremendous and I can only come here and help that.”
The only downside of Sunday’s derby victory was the absence of the Claret and Blue Army, as Premier League matches continue to be played behind closed doors.
“The place would have been rocking today, I feel,” Lingard said. “We can still feel the support from home and we know how much it means to the fans, and being able to see football on TV is a blessing and hope they enjoyed it today.”