Often Partisan

The Lingard Question

The Birmingham Mail today reported that Lee Clark is hopeful that his Manchester United counterpart David Moyes will allow Jesse Lingard to remain on loan at Birmingham City to continue to aid his development as a footballer.

Moyes was widely reported as saying that he was considering bringing his loaned out players back in the winter window to help improve his squad at Old Trafford and give himself more options. Lingard has made thirteen appearances for Blues, scoring six times but he is now suspended for three games after being sent off against Wigan Athletic and his loan expires on January 1.

It might be a controversial opinion but I’m actually ambivalent about Lingard staying. I always suspected that he would struggle to live up to the hype after scoring four goals on debut and whilst he has been a good player I’m not sure I’d describe him as being an undroppable one. His petulance yesterday cost him (Blues are not appealing the red card) and means that he will miss the next three games (Blackburn away and potentially Barnsley at home, the FA Cup tie depending on eligibility and/or Brighton away) – meaning that if he does stay it could be January 18 before we see him in a Blues shirt again.

It’s one thing to loan players to look at the potential for buying them; when Blues took Fabrice Muamba, Nicklas Bendtner and Seb Larsson on loan from Arsenal a few years back they were able to sign Muamba and Larsson after they showed promise; these days loans are much more about helping out a bigger club by giving some young wunderkind playing time. As much as Blues need better players I don’t think I’m comfortable with the idea that we’ll have these players for the season, and then at the end of the year we have to rip it up and start again because they were only with us temporarily. I think even in these difficult times Blues have to look at other options and see if they can bring through their own talent – even if it means taking a punt on some raw recruit from the lower leagues – so that they can develop their own assets.

The thing with Lingard is if he was that good he wouldn’t be playing for us. If a player is good enough they will get playing time at the top level – for example Adnan Januzaj is only 18 but he is getting regular starts for Manchester United. Lingard is three years older and unless he really ripped up the Championship I don’t think he’d stand a chance with his parent club – which confirms the catch-22 situation. The only way we’ll keep him for the season is if he’s not deemed talented enough, and he will only be deemed talented enough if he’s not doing it week in week out in this division.

Thus Clark is reduced to hoping we can keep Lingard for the remainder of the season and that he will rediscover his initial form. The one plus point is that if we do take on Lingard until the end of the season there won’t be a recall clause so if he does find his form, we don’t have to worry about losing him. However, the downside is (as we have discovered with Scott Allan) if he falls away, we’ll be stuck with him (and him with us) until the season end.

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  • Eddie

    We have to cut our cloth accordingly
    and with limited funds it’s a good way to KRO to the end of the season.

    The advantage with loanees are that we won’t have to sell them in January if they do perform well

    • Andy W

      Perhaps LC will have a chat with a certain Mr Phillips??

  • DoctorD

    Dan – do you know what his wages are? To me that unfortunately is the deciding factor.

    I suppose there is another marginal side benefit in having LIngard on loan – for better or worse having a Man Utd player on our books keeps us a teeny tiny bit more on the radar.

    • almajir

      Lingard? I am under the impression we are paying very little if anything at all.

  • StaffsBlue

    Absolutely agree with OP. I’ve never been a fan of Lingard. He’s way overrated. He scored 4 in his first game, of which 3 were laid on a plate… but since then, 2 goals in 12 games? Not the saviour he was lauded to be. I’m also of the firm opinion that no one should be guaranteed a place every game, just because he comes from Man U/Chelsea/Arsenal/etc. I’m not bothered if he goes back to Man U.

    Also, considering the contribution they’ve made so far, we could easily lose Lingard, Allan and Ferguson too. Would we really notice that much difference? McLean and Dudka, we’ve not seen enough yet. I’m hoping McLean will be given a run now, to see if he’s worth keeping before his time is up. If these loanees aren’t making that much of a contribution, let them go and bring in players who will.

    • RichardW

      If the only way he stays is by his being guaranteed a place in the team, I’m not sure that’s healthy. He hasn’t lived up to his debut (who could ?) and he looks a useful, energetic player but I think he would benefit from spending some time in the gym to build himself up – he’s knocked off the ball too easily when he runs with it. Mind you, I didn’t think Carrick looked much cop when he was loaned to us a few years ago !

  • pieman1979

    Trouble with lingard is he is too hot headed. I believe he thinks he is a lot better than his performances suggest. He needs to realise he’s not the best player we have and needs to keep his cool under pressure. He was his own worst enemy yesterday. Yes he was fouled in a similar tackle just seconds prior to his own foul (which the referee ignored I must add) but as a 21 year old professional he should have the right head on his shoulders to be able to take on board the fact that decisions rarely go the right way. This is just a repeat of Ravel Morrison from last season, now look at him. Hopefully Clark will make the right decision for the interest of blues rather than just look at taming and investing in the youth who have the potential of becoming great and going on to bigger and better things without us seeing any financial return. Personally I’d prefer him to look into our own youth squad where we will get financial rewards as we need the finance and talent to help our club to move forward

  • wayne 1875

    What has happend with Scott Allen he looked good at first?

    • almajir

      Wasn’t doing it in training, looked abysmal for the ressies – fell out of favour

    • StaffsBlue

      I think Scott Allan has lost his way a bit. I thought we’d found a gold nugget at first too. I like the kid’s style a lot. But, maybe he’ll have to drop down the leagues and start again. I’d like to see the lad come good somewhere. Unfortunately, I don’t think it’ll be at Blues.

  • Bluesbot

    What Irks me is that Lee Clark is stating out in the open that if Lingard stays on with us for the remainder of the season then he will play all games unless suspended or injured (see quote in BEM), imo what a stupid thing to say, for starters that tells Lingard no matter how he plays he will be picked, and tells other squad members that no matter how hard they train or how well they play when covering Lingard it will only be short lived until Lingard is available again.
    Cant say that this will be a positive step for team harmony !!!

    • Blueboy88

      Totally agree..I am happy for him to stay but he has got to take his chances with the rest of the squad.

      Just because he is a Man Utd reserse should not make him undroppable..that is not good for the rest of the squad or indeed the player himself.

    • StaffsBlue

      I think may just be a sweetener to get Moyes to allow him back. But, if he’s guaranteed a place, then complacency will creep in and he won’t have to put in a shift like everyone else… and he’ll know that.

      If he does stay for the rest of the season and, he’s not putting in the performances, he should have his arse dumped on the bench (or in the stands) just like anyone else… I don’t care who he is or where he comes from.

      • A Turton

        To be fair to LC, his track record would suggest that complacency would be met with being left off the team sheet altogether, regardless of what he says in an effort to keep him at Blues.

        Im not too worried about this statement, and im sure the rest of the squad isnt either.

        KRO
        DNM

  • Blueact Steve

    Great post Al. I agree completely I certainly would not move heaven and earth to retain Lingaard. Do you know whats happened with Shane Ferguson? Scott Allen will obviously go back as he is on a 6 month loan but from what I can tell Ferguson’s loan was for a season.

    • mark

      ferguson was on the bench……..

  • andy

    Well I am pleased this has been bought up. After Lingard made a sensational debut I thought he was that missing piece of the jigsaw as Blues were creating plenty of chances without converting then along came this kid and belted in 4 on his debut. Since then he has become a bit of a damp squid and I would be amazed if Man Utd recalled him so I think there wont be a problem in keeping him for the remainder of the season, and as Lee Clark is keen to keep him, its not for us to reason why. We have to remember he is a young player with talent and had he carried on the form he produced against Sheff Wed then he wouldn’t be with Blues right now.

    • steve

      He was on his last chance apparently at MU.They weren’t happy with the way he was progressing,so sent him on loan. like most,i haven’t been impressed since Sheff Wed.

  • mark

    again this gives a opportunity to another player maybe mclean to show us if hes capable…….on lingard yes he learning his trade with us…..not sure his head will get too big as Clark has shown with ravel…..
    For me he does need to learn with his head……when getting in good positions you need to be more clinical, or take/make other options maybe play other players in…… but i could say that about ziggy, Novak, and who ever springs to mind……….. imo lingard will probably stay til the end of the season…..

  • http://oftenpartisan Tony

    Lingard is not that good hes 21 years old, as Dan pointed out there are others much younger who have made a bigger impression I would expect at 18 young players would show the class required for a premiership future.
    However those four goals he scored on debut showed some maturity,yes a couple looked easy but can anyone confidently say that presented with identical chances the likes of Novak or any of the other strikers for that matter would have put them away?

  • Lee H

    Its a shame Asante has once again struggled as I believe he would have played the same position as Lingard. Not sure we will ever see him around the 1st team.

  • StaffsBlue

    For me, at times, Novak has looked the the player most likely to score. He’s been very unlucky on a number of occasions and opposition keepers have pulled off some cracking saves to deny him. At the end of the day, if you’re going to score, you have to at least make the keeper work. 20 shots a game are useless if none of them are on target.

  • Chris W

    Lingard, imo, has not overly excelled, 6 goals from 13 games, 4 of which came on his début.
    He does offer a threat down the left but without Murphy or Hancox he has been a little out of sorts.
    We are creating plenty of chances but have yet to find a “sniffer” in or around the box.
    Promising to play him might be part of the loan agreement, but it can have an adverse affect on others trying or hoping for that elusive carrot to make their mark, same as those who have had off games and been dropped will think the system is unfair.
    Maybe LC might be better off looking for an alternative option, maybe looking for an “out and out” striker from somewhere else.
    KRO+DNM

    • StaffsBlue

      That out-and-out striker could be McLean. He needs a run of 2 or 3 games to get some kind of form. We might as well take a good look at him before he has to go back. I believe that 3 games without Lingard won’t do us any harm.

  • matt

    Trouble with lingard is he is too hot headed
    I’m actually ambivalent about Lingard staying. I always suspected that he would struggle to live up to the hype after scoring four goals
    Lingard is not that good hes 21 years old
    Lingard? I am under the impression we are paying very little if anything at all!

    Just a few words posted on Jesse Lingard!

    Well if nothing positive can be found to talk about in an eight game unbeaten run in the financial situation we are in try going to watch the team home and away and support your team disgraceful piece dan hang your head! You just add to the negative situation we have all been suffering for the last 3 years! well done dan for another great piece! thanks for all your hard work! merry xmas!

  • bluenoseb

    I agree about lingard as that he hasnt lived up to the form he first showed when he came, but saying that what worries me if we take him out of the front four players and there isnt any pace ther at all apart from chris burke, who isnt the quickest winger in the world. Ferguson doesnt seem to be in favour at the min and shinnie is even slower than burke and for me elliot is just a waste of time on either flank and has had a very poor season, that doesnt leave a lot of other options. So i agree the 3 game ban could just refresh him a litte and come back with the bit between his teeth again, but i would want his loan renewed because if we dont we havent got another player like him in the squad who can run with the ball at pace.If we had any1 in the under21s similar to that I believe clark would already have him in and around the first team squad. Lingard knows blues and knows the system now so replacing him with another loan would take time for that player to bed in and would we get a beta loan for the wages were paying in our current financial position I couldnt see it.

    Think the comparison to lingard not playing for UTD and that januzaj is is a bit harsh. Hes an exceptional talent who is keeping seasoned pros on the bench this season like young,valencia, nani and others. And for me its stating the obvious who is gona be the better player at this moment in time, but there are also alot of other youngsters at UTD who are the same age as lingard and are out on loan the keane twins come to mind, so dont think hes the only one at ther in that postion. But these loans now are make n break for these young players cus as dan said if they cant make at championship standard at their age now then manu will get rid or realese at end of season.

  • Richard Granfield

    Jesse Lingard is good now and potentially an England international. If he had better players around him (on his wavelength) he would produce more. We need to keep him, and if possible, obtain another attacker of his calibre.

    • steve

      As i said earlier.Utd aren’t happy with the way he’s progressed at OT,that,s why he’s out on loan.I don’t think he will play with better players than United.

  • StaffsBlue

    For me, Adeyemi gives more to the side than Lingard. After an iffy start, I’ve been very impressed the last 10 or 12 games.

    • mark

      he was tower in the forest game made some crunching tackles …. i mentioned at the start of the season one of our younger player will be worth a mint, and would not look out of place in the premiership would be Adeyemi……….i believe his stock has just risen though the roof…………..

      • StaffsBlue

        If his form is as good or better in the new year, he could well be our player of the season come May.

  • http://OP tmsblues

    Send him back if its got a clause of ‘play at all times when fit’ to please Man Utd! Its got to be much more sensible encouraging and cost effective to play our own eager kids now and again. Many of these loanees are placed with clubs on the understanding they’ll get picked regardless of their form their owners understandably want them tested out every week. Whilst this probably keeps the salary contribution down, it is a crazy way to pick a team and certainly no way to motivate other players available in the squad.

  • andy

    At the end of the day, if we had owners putting money in, instead of taking out and selling players whenever possible, then we wouldn’t be having this debate.

  • Steve Aerobic

    I think that Lingarrd has been useful and was a good addition when we needed him. I was almost relieved when he got sent off and thus suspended as he seems to be an automatic selection for elsie and I think this restricts his options. A big thanks to Jesse for his imput but lets send him back now and wish him luck.

  • Asif ashiq

    Id like to see lingaard go back to man u. Like a lot of people i think he reckons he is too good for us. There are other players they could get in. Try arsenal or tottenham reserves. And maybe have a word with eddie newton at chelski. Theyve got a few good players out on loan at lower level.

  • http://oftenpartison sappy dad

    once again defensively we looked the buisness. a goal scorer
    goalmaker is paramount to the team …our goal difference
    tells me that lc has got it spot on …i just hope that he does
    not make the same mistake as other blues managers and
    go into a mode of thinking that not losing is more important
    than winning ….a finisher maker would spot the ball for the
    team..

  • Sh*t on the villa

    Lingard is the kind of player id like to see blues buy on a perm deal if we had the money. Will we see him playing league games for united any time soon? I doubt it. They have far better players for the position(s) lingard would play in.

    If he does go back, I would like to see young koby arthur given some first team action behind the striker. A real young gem and hes one of our own!

  • StaffsBlue

    I too think we need to starting bringing our own players on now. Koby Arthur, Demarai Gray, Reece Brown. They need starts, not just coming on for the last 5-10 minutes. Let’s see if they’re up to it or not.

  • Mineheadblue

    Completely agree Al. I don’t think that Lingard has lived up to expectations since the first game and I would like to see Ferguson given a decent run.
    If we are going to loan anyone else it would be good to get someone who can score goals. I think ideally we need a player like Smith who went to Leeds…. someone who can put himself about and worry defences as we seem to be creating chances but not putting them away.

  • StaffsBlue

    The only difference between us and, say, Derby, is the goals scored. Our defence is slightly better, but they’ve scored 20 goals more than us in the same number of games. That 20 goals basically equates to an extra 10 points.. and 4th place. So we clearly need to improve the number of goals scored, whilst retaining our good defensive record.

  • http://bcfcfreeforums romanblue

    if he costs next to nothing why cut your nose off to spite your face,keep him!he gives us something different.face it, loverman is stealing a living for doing feck all and how much is he costing us?cheers roman x

  • A Moseley Blues fan

    You must be crazy starting an internet debate (for want of a much better word) criticising one of our best and most consistent players who despite being a valued Manchester United squad member has shown complete dedication and commitment to our most demanding and at times depressing cause. I am confident that his team mates and our coaching staff do not have such a low opinion of the lad who has played a vital part in our improvement as football team and hopefully will be back in that team in a couple of weeks. Disgrace, if you cannot support them shut up and stay away.

  • http://oftenpartison sappy dad

    i would like to see lc try for lee tomlin of petetborough on a loan
    with try befpre you buy contract ….zigics contract will end in
    the summer …which will leave us a few million better off…

  • andy

    Maybe Lee Clark is worried about playing the likes of Koby Arthur, and who would blame him after already watching Jack Butland and Nathan Redmond sold!

  • Enckelman

    I have to agree, although I do reckon we were paying pretty much nothing for him in terms of wages, since he’s being loaned from a big club who don’t have to worry about the wage bill selecting the right club to loan their players to is more important to them.

    But I think if he does go back we have to bring someone else in to void the gap of a already thin squad. I just think it’s way too early for players like Gray and Arthur to be playing week in week out.

  • StaffsBlue
  • Bcfc1955

    Why are we not playing Ferguson on the left wing?
    We have played a number of strikers out there who are clearly not suitable or young lads who are clearly not ready for first team action yet and the result is that we never threaten down our left side
    If the strikers were scoring regularly from that position I could understand it but this is not the case

  • StaffsBlue

    I have to admit, I can’t understand why we’re not using Ferguson, a natural left-footer. I hate seeing right footers on the left wing and vise versa. He would also provide a bit of security in front of Robbo while he’s at left back.

    • BhamCityJulian

      Imagine a new manager coming in and saying to to the players:
      “who has played left wing in the Prem?”

      “Me boss”

      “Just you?”

      “Just me”

      “How you finding the Championship?”

      “I can’t remember”

      • StaffsBlue

        His last game was the win at Barnsley, so he must have the attention span of a goldfish lol

        • BhamCityJulian
  • BhamCityJulian

    It’ll be interesting how much we miss him in the three games. To me he adds pace and intelligent passing and movement in the opponents half and I don’t know who else does that.

    Like Zigic next season I expect they’ll be a void when he’d not in the team

  • fozzylou

    if you think Blues are better off without Lingard you are deluded.

    You mention bringing through youngsters, i’d say who do you have in mind? Arthur in time will do well, Asante injury prone, Ferguson see Lingard, any others would be blind guess work.

    I do agree though that using loans isn’t ideal but we have no choice. That coupled with the need to stay in the Championship should dictate we have the best players available to prevent relegation. Lingard has flattered to deceive but he offers far more than the alternatives.

    If you want to put forward a better solution than Lingard please put it forward otherwise we should be happy with what we currently have.

    we should be actively looking to terminate Allen’s loan. Dudka is off back to Poland so another space for a free agent or short term contracted player maybe available to Clark.

  • jazzzy786

    He will not get into the Man Utd first team for the foreseeable future. If Man Utd think playing reserve team football is the best option for Jesse Lingard then that is what is going to happen. The ball is firmly in Man Utds court.

  • Martin Grainger

    Lingard is excellent – i hope we keep him

  • Wingman Blue

    You forget Joe Hart. A loanee, we had him for a season, we developed him, and he was awesome for us. Lingard is a Redmond substitute, not the finished article, but threatens and drags defenders off-station. His greatest value is allowing others the room to run into the space he has created by his threatening runs. It’s the bigger picture – he doesn’t have to score to enable us to win. Keep him if we can.

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