Manchester United academy graduates Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard handed fresh hope under new boss Erik ten Hag
According to The Sun, Manchester United stars Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard have been given fresh hopes of having a future at their boyhood club as incoming new manager Erik ten Hag is keen on working with both players.
The Daily Mail has revealed that ten Hag is in constant touch with Man United executives John Murtough and Darren Fletcher. He will have a key role in deciding who the club will be retaining amongst the out-of-contract players and other stars who are considering their future.
One of these players is Rashford, and a source said that the Englishman is optimistic about his chances under the new manager. The 24-year-old is keen to get back into the England squad under Gareth Southgate through his displays on the pitch for the Red Devils.
“He’s optimistic about his chances under Ten Hag and knows that if he plays well for United, he will be in the thoughts of Gareth Southgate. He knows Ten Hag will give him a chance if he performs in training, so he’s feeling confident and can’t wait for a new start.”
ten Hag will be working alongside Fletcher in the summer, with the former player taking on a lot more responsibilities in the Manchester side’s recruitment process after the recent resignation of Matt Judge. Most of the club’s meetings with potential targets and their agents were earlier handled by Judge.
“United is his club”
With players like Paul Pogba, Juan Mata, Edinson Cavani. and Lingard all set to depart at the end of the season for free when their contracts expire, it is said that the new manager is keen on letting some of them go. This would allow him to make four or five signings when there are vacancies in the squad.
However, a source said that Lingard is willing to change his mind about an Old Trafford exit after ten Hag has let him know that he wants to speak with the player. If the 29-year-old gets the assurances he is looking for, he could stick around for a few more years.
“He was resigned to the idea that he was going to leave and make a fresh start at another club. But Ten Hag has let it be known he wants to speak with him and if he gives him the assurances he needs, Jesse could be persuaded to stay. United is his club and he’s never wanted to leave.”
Having come through the ranks at the academy in Carrington, Rashford and Lingard have been success stories at Man United. Both have managed to break into the first-team squads and establish themselves as key players on the side.
However, in recent years, both academy graduates have seen their game time reduced thanks to a variety of issues. Lingard has seen himself warm the bench due to Bruno Fernandes being preferred in the attacking midfield role, while Rashford has suffered a massive drop in form since the 2020 Euros.
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This has caused Lingard to run down his contract at the Theatre of Dreams to free himself and move to another club in order to gain more playing time. From his incredible January loan spell at West Ham United last term, he has proven that he is still capable of performing at the highest level if given a chance.
Rashford meanwhile, has seen the rise of Anthony Elanga and the recent signing of Jadon Sancho force him out of the team. However, ten Hag’s arrival could see both these players handed a lifeline and stay on at their boyhood clubs. Fans would certainly prefer this as well, as it is never easy saying goodbye to one of their own.