Jesse Lingard. Where do we start with this man?

The 28-year-old was on fire for West Ham in the first 45 minutes of their 3-2 win against Wolves at Molineux on Monday night.

The attacker scored a dazzling goal that saw him run with the ball from his own half before making the net ripple.

He then played a crucial role with an amazing piece of skill for Pablo Fornals’ goal and directly assisted Jarrod Bowen’s strike after yet another superb run.

We think it was the greatest 45-minute display by any player in Premier League history – especially at West Ham, anyway.

Lingard tore Wolves to shreds with his dribbling ability, his shooting and his passing and thanks to stats by Wyscout, we’ve been able to show just how well the Manchester United loanee played in that first half.

Below shows the actions that Lingard made in both the first and second half and whether or not those actions were successful or unsuccessful.

In the first half, you can see how much of the pitch Lingard covered as he made successful actions almost everywhere. However, after the break, you can see the England international was more contained on the left and more of his actions were unsuccessful. That could have been due to him running himself in the ground in the first 45 minutes.

A lot went through Lingard. Only Mark Noble [32] was involved in more pass combinations than the loan star [26] with the club captain filling in for the injured Declan Rice in the midfield.

The key to Lingard having so much time on the ball in the first half was his ability to buzz around the Wolves players and constantly finding space to play in.

Below is an example in the 30th minute as how Lingard does this.

You can see here that even though the ball is being played backwards, Lingard is moving forward because he found a pocket of space behind the Wolves midfield and ahead of their defence.

Even though the ball is still being passed around, Lingad is moving fluidly to keep himself free of close markers.

The ball is eventually played to him but as he’s closed down quickly, he has to play the ball backwards again.

That doesn’t deter Lingard as he again runs forward and collects a pass that is eventually played into him by Noble.

It’s Lingard’s ability to find space and keep the ball close to his feet that bamboozled Wolves’ defenders on Monday night – as we saw with his goal.

As you can see below, Lingard is in acres of space when he collects the ball to spring a counter-attack.

He then looks up and sees there are no Wolves players too near him and launches into a full sprint towards the home side’s goal.

It isn’t until the point below where a Wolves player gets within touching distance of Lingard but he’s build up such a head of steam, coupled with Michail Antonio’s distracting run, that Nuno Espirito Santo’s defence cannot keep up with him.

Lingard’s role in Fornals’ goal is perhaps our favourite moment of the match other than the Man United loanee’s goal.

As you can see below, Lingard is already running forward before a pass is made to him down the left-wing.

It then just takes one touch right in the corner spot to keep the ball in play and another to knock it past Nelson Semedo.

It was a thing of beauty to see Lingard do that down in the corner. We’re struggling to think of a sublime piece of skill like that, especially leading to a goal from a West Ham player in a long time.

Lingard seems to be getting better and better with each game he plays and that sets an exciting precedent for upcoming fixtures.

Since joining us on loan in January, Lingard has made eight Premier League appearances and has failed to score or assist a goal in just one of those.

Next up for the Hammers is a tough clash against Leicester on Sunday with the Foxes making their way to the London Stadium.

It’ll be third playing fourth, bizarrely, and a win for David Moyes’ men could take them within a point of third-placed Leicester and be a further show that this team is genuinely in the race for Champions League football.

In other West Ham news, here’s what our panel of Super Fans said about Lingard’s display.


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