Lingard dropping Raiola as agent adds to uncertainty over his future

Jesse Lingard has cut ties with agent Mino Raiola, according to a report by ESPN.

They report that he has worked with the England international since the start of 2020.

But Lingard will now be managed by family and those close to him, after an amicable split with Raiola.

He has missed the last seven matches through injury but the report also says he is hopeful of a return to fitness soon.

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Lingard’s uncertain situation

The report recalls interest in Lingard from two clubs, Tottenham and Porto, in the summer.

He’s into the final year of his United contract, although the club have an option to trigger a 12-month extension.

They haven’t yet taken that up, but the report says the club want Lingard to stay at Old Trafford.

That is despite the fact he has slipped down the pecking order, with the arrival of Donny van de Beek not helping on that score.

The report also says United don’t want to lose Lingard for free. But from January, he will be free to organise a pre-contract departure with overseas clubs ahead of the 2021/22 season.

Triggering the option would preserve some of Lingard’s value, but the change in his agency only adds to the uncertainty around his future.

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Raiola was always a baffling choice

Lingard’s decision to partner with Raiola looked a slightly strange one from the outset.

It could perhaps have been seen as a hostile move from the midfielder, given the problems Raiola has given the club over Paul Pogba.

The Sun reported in December that Ed Woodward refused to deal with Raiola over the signing of Erling Haaland, who joined Borussia Dortmund instead.

Perhaps the move by Lingard will smooth relations between player and club, but it remains to be seen.

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Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.