David Moyes has warned England boss Gareth Southgate that he’ll be squeezing the max out of Jesse Lingard before the Euros.
The on loan Manchester United forward has scored nine goals in ten games for West Ham, his best total in a season, following his latest penalty strike at Newcastle.
Lingard limped off with cramp and Moyes rejected the prospect of his new talisman being tired or injured ahead of a tense six game Champions League chasing run-in.
Lingard has played himself into Southgate’s Euros squad on current form – during which he will face Moyes’ homeland.
He said: “Jesse won’t get any favoured treatment, not from a Scotsman going into the Euros this year. He won’t get favoured treatment.
“Jesse is a really fit boy. He wants to play. I push all my players hard. I push them hard to play better. I am pleased with him. He was a bit quieter at St James’.”
Lingard’s latest goal, a penalty after Ciaran Clark handled, came close to earning an unlikely point as the excellent Hammers fought back from two down with just ten men.
But five mad minutes in the first half, riddled with errors, ruined their chance of a win, and slack defending again led to Joe Willock netting a winner for the Geordies.
West Ham’s top four hopes are still on track on the evidence of their revival with ten men, and with a tough game against Chelsea up next, Moyes is refusing to press the panic button.
He said: “We like talking about the Champions League, we like the sound of that when everyone says it, but we are realistic.
“The quality of the teams around and below us have been over this course many more times than us. But the way the players are is fantastic.
“The football was not flaky, maybe the decision making, maybe a couple of things out of control.
“We made a couple of horrendous mistakes. It is not a big drama, we are not going to make big issues about it. We have had great results this season. This is not so good but we came close.”
Those mistakes included Craig Dawson’s lunging reckless tackle on Brazilian striker Joelinton. Newcastle played on and scored, with Issa Diop getting in a tangle to flick Allan Saint-Maximin’s saved shot into the net for an own goal. Dawson was then shown red as the Toon celebrated.
Lukas Fabianski dropped Matt Ritchie’s corner, presenting Joelinton was a tap in from a yard.
The comeback was slick. Diop heading home and Lingard’s penalty ultimately being wiped out by super sub Willock’s great header.
Moyes pinpointed the lack of quick passing at the back as a problem, but leaking goals could prove their eventual demise against the elite.
It’s ten goals conceded in the last four games.
Moyes added: “There’s no shouting at them. They are experienced men, made the mistakes, and they know.
“We won a great game against Leicester, and Wolves. Arsenal, Good results. This was tough. Newcastle have found form and hope and showed that.
“It wasn’t because we played badly or Newcastle played well. It was because we gave away two poor goals. The first goal and sending off dominated the game.”