“Sometimes you need to fly the nest and go.”
Gary Neville has admitted that he is “disappointed” that one player in particular did not leave Man United this summer.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Neville was praising Dan James for leaving United and joining Leeds at the end of the transfer window, but that he felt Jesse Lingard should have done something similar.
Dan James admitted that he left Manchester as it was “the right time” for him to move on, presumably largely impacted by the arrival of Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo, as both of whom will have been ahead of the young Welshman in the pecking order.
Gary Neville on Jesse Lingard and Dan James
Neville seemed surprised that Lingard didn’t do the same, especially after his impressive loan spell at West Ham last season, and links between him and the London club all summer.
He said: “It’s really good for Dan James. It’s one of those where this is a win-win. He came to United and always did his very best, he was a massive threat on the counter-attack, but United have a lot of players in those areas.
“It’s really important for young players to go and play, and Leeds have always wanted him. They wanted him the first time round when United got him instead. He’ll suit the way they play with such pace on the counter-attack. He’ll love it there, the crowd’s a big crowd, a club that demands a lot.
“It’s a good thing for United to get the money they did, and good for Dan to further his career at a good club.
“I’m disappointed Jesse Lingard hasn’t left. He’ll get a few games but I think he had something going at West Ham that meant he was standing up as a really good player and to go back into being a squad player again, it’s disappointing. Sometimes you need to fly the nest and go.”
Neville had previously questioned United’s activity in the transfer window, insisting they should be going all in to try and buy Harry Kane. However, he is definitely pleased with the signing of his former teammate Cristiano Ronaldo.
It is hard to argue with Neville’s point about Lingard though, and it will be extremely surprising to see him play any sort of significant minutes in the league this season.
Donny van de Beek was also linked with a move away from the club, and is agent has hit out at United for “blocking” a deadline day move to Everton.