Jesse Lingard made his return to the England team in Thursday night’s 5-0 win over San Marino at Wembley – but supporters are divided over whether or not he made a positive impact for the Three Lions.
The 28-year-old has been in inspired form since completing a loan move to West Ham in January, and was rewarded for his recent purple patch with a nod from Gareth Southgate as the national team started their World Cup 2022 qualification campaign.
Lingard played a full 90 minutes against the European minnows, and showed plenty of promise, peppering the San Marino goal with nine shots – five of which were on target. He also registered an assist.
And the playmaker clearly caught the eye, with several fans hailing his display on Twitter:
@cl0ne2 tweeted: “Lingard MoM – superb last night. Pity he didn't score.”
@fayemac_x tweeted: “Jesse Lingard is a prime example of how much performances are based on enjoying your football and having confidence!! Been brilliant tonight”.
@Michael61293404 tweeted: “Lingard all day long. His movement, and his vision was outstanding. All he needed was a goal to cap of an all round performance”.
@ZiziMor tweeted: “Lingard’s comeback from being a total meme to England starter is incredible”.
But for all of his exuberance, Lingard failed to find the back of the net himself, and some spectators accused him of being too wasteful and blinkered in crucial areas:
@RedmillHayden tweeted: “Lingard was abysmal, greedy, shooting was dreadful. His runs were good in the first 30 minutes but he was ridiculously greedy. Pass the ball”.
@iminginisbottle tweeted: “Lingard was awful today. He impressed ?? Come off it.”
@DanMedley23 tweeted: “Lingard couldn’t finish his dinner man, absolutely terrible player.”
@tom_avfc1 tweeted: “Lingard has had an absolute stinker”
Thursday night represented Lingard’s first international appearance since the UEFA Nations League third-place play-off clash against Switzerland in June 2019.
The midfielder has been a key player during Southgate’s tenure as manager, and featured in all but one of England’s matches at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.