Lingard talks up 'connection' with West Ham team-mates after two-goal debut

Lingard talks up 'connection' with West Ham team-mates after two-goal debut”

Jesse Lingard wore the broadest smile throughout a superb night for West Ham United at Aston Villa on Wednesday.

"Three points is the most important thing, the team worked hard as a collective and we think about the next one against Fulham", he told BT Sport after the game. "We'll have him in and around the squad, I hoping to have him in and around the squad but I won't reveal if he'll start or not".

West Ham: Fabianski (7), Coufal (8), Dawson (7), Ogbonna (6), Cresswell (7), Fredericks (8), Rice (7), Soucek (8), Lingard (9), Benrahma (8), Antonio (8).

Lingard had endured a torrid start to the season with Manchester United, failing to make a single Premier League appearance under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer during the first half of 2020-21.

"The team has been great with me and I've settled in quickly", he explained. "I was smiling before the game and during, I just enjoy playing football".

More news: South African strain of Covid found in Birmingham

"In training we've had that connection as well and I feel like I've bedded in quickly, so come the matchday it's easy to play with Michail". Despite a 3-1 loss to Liverpool, West Ham have been in excellent form and they continued that push for Europe against Villa.

He added: "We have got a much hungrier group of players, which is trying to improve and get better, so that is probably the big difference".

Tomas Soucek opened the scoring just after the half-time break, before January recruit Jesse Lingard scored on his debut - though Emi Martinez will have been disappointed that he failed to keep the left-footed effort out. He plays nice one two touches with me and Benrahma.

The home side had an off day and Dean Smith will be demanding a strong reaction from his players next time out.

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