Former Premier League striker Peter Crouch has urged Manchester United to use Jesse Lingard in a player-swap deal for West Ham United midfielder Declan Rice in the summer. Rice was linked with a move to Chelsea under Frank Lampard but with the latter being dismissed from his role last month, the move now seems unlikely.
Jesse Lingard made a loan move from Manchester United to West Ham United in the January transfer window and has scored three goals in his four league games for the side. His impressive performances have made the London side interested in making his loan spell permanent at the end of the season.
Declan Rice has also been another integral player in West Ham's surprising charge towards the European competition spots on the Premier League table. The midfielder has been immense for the Hammers since he became a regular in the side in 2017. His performances this campaign and the last have drawn the attention of top sides in the league. Chelsea were the frontrunners for the Englishman but their interest has since cooled.
With Chelsea out of the picture and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer interested in bringing in a defensive midfielder to Manchester United, a move for Declan Rice would be a wise move according to Peter Crouch.
‘I love Declan Rice,’ Crouch told the Daily Mail.
‘I have got a few friends who are West Ham fans and they want the club to break the bank, make him club captain and do all that it takes to keep him there for the next 15 years. He’s a brilliant player and could play for any of the top sides.
‘Your suggestion makes sense for United. Lingard needs to get away as his time at Old Trafford is up, while Rice is the kind of player United need to add. Would West Ham do that deal? I’m not so sure. We’ll see what happens.’
Rice for Lingard swap would make sense for Manchester United
Lingard is currently on loan at the London club until the end of the season. The 28-year-old has been at Manchester United for about a decade after graduating from the club's academy in 2011. He went out on loan to various Premier League and Championship sides over the next four years before settling at the club in 2015. He became a regular under then manager Louis Van Gaal scoring in the Dutchman's final game in charge at Manchester United.
He even got further involved at the club with the arrival of Jose Mourinho in 2016. Lingard was an integral part of Mourinho's spell at Old Trafford going on to make over 100 appearances for the club in the Portuguese's two-and-a-half years in charge. Lingard however found himself down the pecking order at the arrival of current Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. The Englishman managed only nine league starts since the beginning of last season before moving to West Ham in the January transfer window.
The midfielder has since regained his mojo under former Manchester United manager David Moyes now in charge of the Hammers. He scored the second goal for West Ham as they defeated Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 in the derby on Sunday to put them fourth on the league table four points behind second-place Manchester United.
Due to Lingard's rich form so far, West Ham are already looking to make his loan deal permanent. While it is uncertain what decision Manchester United would make on the future of the Englishman, a player-swap deal could be on the cards.
Declan Rice could be the player Manchester United decide to swap Lingard for at West Ham. The defensive midfielder was strongly linked with a move to Chelsea last summer but West Ham were holding out for a figure close to £80M which made Chelsea decide against signing him.