Lingard lifts West Ham into fourth


AFP, London

Jesse Lingard inspired West Ham United to a thrilling 3-2 win at Wolves to move fourth in the Premier League on Monday, as Everton's hopes of a top-four finish were dented in a 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace.

Lingard's stunning form since joining the Hammers on loan from Manchester United in January saw him earn a recall by England manager Gareth Southgate last month.

The midfielder further bolstered his case for inclusion in Southgate's squad for Euro 2020 as he ran from inside his own half to slot home his sixth goal in eight West Ham appearances after just six minutes.

Lingard then turned creator for his side's other two goals as the visitors surged into a 3-0 lead inside 38 minutes. His cute flick when penned in at the corner flag teed up Arthur Masuaku to cross for Pablo Fornals to double the Hammers' lead.

Lingard then surged beyond four weak Wolves challenges to free Jarrod Bowen, who fired in at Rui Patricio's near post. "He's playing terrifically well," said West Ham boss David Moyes. "Tonight he looked like a real top player."

West Ham move a point ahead of Chelsea in a tight battle for a place in the Champions League next season.

Tottenham and Liverpool are just three points behind Moyes's men with eight games to play.