Relegation-threatened Newcastle United are in talks to sign Manchester United star Jesse Lingard in the January transfer window.

According to reliable transfer expert and journalist, Fabrizio Romano on Twitter, Newcastle United are in contact with Manchester United regarding the transfer of Jesse Lingard.

The English international is nowhere near the Red Devils starting XI and is currently in the final few months of his contract. A nifty player with versatility to boot, Manchester United run the risk of losing him on a free transfer at the end of the current campaign.

Lingard was long the forgotten man under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer before a loan spell at West Ham United last season silenced his detractors. The short stint with the Hammers did wonders to his reputation but achieved little in gaining more game-time at Old Trafford.

The 28-year-old has played just 267 minutes for Manchester United this season. Of his 12 appearances, just two have come as a starter. He featured in the club’s 1-1 draw against BSC Young Boys earlier this week but failed to stand out in particular. The fact that he only made the bench for Saturday’s win over Norwich City could hint at more of the same under Ralf Rangnick as well.

Lingard steals the show (Photo by IAN KINGTON/AFP/Getty Images)

Jesse Lingard to join Newcastle United? (Photo by IAN KINGTON/AFP/Getty Images)

Newcastle have made contact to secure the services of the player but are yet to reach any sort of agreement. It would appear that there are more teams in the fray and that the pursuit for the Englishman at this point of time remains an open race.

Unlike at Old Trafford, Lingard could very well become the star man at Newcastle. The Magpies might be flush with cash, but their lack of riches on the field is showing. One of the favourites to go down this season, they were humbled by Leicester City 4-0 on Sunday.

They have won just one game all season and find themselves three points from safety. Making the right moves in January could give them a fighting chance of staying up. Lingard has what it takes to become a leading player for a mid-table side, and Newcastle could provide him with the platform to do just that.

Not only will it hand him more minutes on the field, but it also boosts the chances of him making the England squad for next summer’s FIFA World Cup. His trailblazing end to last season was not enough to convince Gareth Southgate to include Lingard into England’s Euro 2020 squad. The 28-year-old will hope that lightning fails to strike twice.

A sale in January could be a win-win for all parties. Lingard will get the game time he craves, while Newcastle will receive the injection of quality they desperately need.  More so, Manchester United will also be able to recoup some transfer fee on a player they risk losing for free next summer.

Newcastle’s deep pockets combined with their desperation to sign better players could see Manchester United net a considerable sum, should they play their cards right. Whether Lingard is happy to stay on and prove his credentials to Rangnick or take his talents elsewhere remains to be seen.

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