There is a growing sense among some West Ham United fans that the club’s hopes of signing Jesse Lingard from Manchester United are dead in the water.

But what is perhaps more concerning – particularly for David Moyes as he seeks to delicately manage and balance expectations and progress – is that many fans believe West Ham will be fine without him.

Man United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer appeared to kill West Ham’s hopes of signing loan star Lingard on a permanent basis when he said he is part of his plans following a friendly against Derby at the weekend.

Since having the dagger to the heart from Solskjaer, a large number of West Ham fans on social media have confidently stated that a move for someone like relegated West Brom playmaker Matheus Pereira would be just as good – or even better.

West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League
Photo by Kirsty Wigglesworth Pool Getty Images

Fans who think West Ham will be fine without Lingard need reality check

But it is time for a reality check.

Yes those fans can rightly point out that West Ham were in and around the top four consistently long before Lingard joined in January.

But make no mistake, without him West Ham would not have recorded their best ever Premier League points haul and qualified for the Europa League with a sixth place finish.

The Man United loan star elevated West Ham’s game to a new level. His pace, ability and charisma lifted the whole club and inspired those playing with him too.

In just 16 games he scored nine goals – one less than West Ham’s top scorers for the entire season – and laid on five assists as well as several pre-assists (the key action that results in a goal).

West Ham United v Leicester City - Premier League
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Loan star took West Ham to another level

West Ham finished just one win off making the Champions League. One win. West Ham.

And much of that was down to how they grew stronger as the season went on thanks to Lingard’s arrival.

If West Ham cannot get a permanent deal to bring him back it leaves a gaping hole.

 

It is not a hole that Said Benrahma will fill easily. Indeed it was Lingard linking up WITH the likes of Benrahma that made West Ham such a force.

Pace is THE key commodity in the Premier League. And Lingard’s electric pace from midfield completely transformed West Ham.

Pereira would be an excellent addition. The Brazilian is technically superb.

West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League
Photo by Kirsty Wigglesworth Pool Getty Images

Pace is key and it is deluded to think Hammers can easily cope without charismatic midfield ace

But it is utterly deluded to suggest he is anything like as quick or dynamic as Lingard. Only one player – Harry Kane – had more goal involvements in the second half of the season than Lingard.

Just take a moment to re-run some of his magical goals in your head. Think back to Villa, Wolves, Leicester, Arsenal, Tottenham. He was the difference maker for West Ham.

In fact he proved a perfect fit for the Hammers and it will be a great shame if he does decide to waste the best years of his career kicking his heels on the bench at Old Trafford.

There are over five weeks left of the transfer window and a lot can change between now and then.

There will have been several Premier League matches by August 31st and Lingard should know by then if he genuinely is part of Solskjaer’s plans.

West Ham must be waiting to pounce if he isn’t.

In other news, no nonsense Moyes fires West Ham warning saying ‘We don’t have anybody that special’ ahead of new season.

And ExWHUemployee lifts lid on why Rice has not signed a new contract yet.

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