Ex-Manchester United Winger Jesse Lingard Signs With South Korea’s FC Seoul

England's Jesse Lingard (right) in duel with Slovenia's Aljaz Struna
England's Jesse Lingard (right) in duel with Slovenia's Aljaz Struna. Photo by James Marsh/BPI/REX/Shutterstock (9119595cr)

Former Manchester United winger Jesse Lingard made a surprising move on Thursday by joining South Korea’s FC Seoul. Lingard inked a two-year deal with the K League side.

Lingard has been a free agent ever since his contract with Nottingham Forest expired in the summer. The 31-year-old player has since been linked with a number of clubs, including Saudi Arabia’s Al-Ettifaq and several MLS franchises. However, he ended up deciding to go an unexpected route and take a challenge in South Korea.

“I’ve always wanted different challenges and to create new memories in my career, and I believe being in South Korea is the perfect place for that,” Lingard said after the move was finalized.

Lingard added that he had offers from several clubs in recent months but that FC Seoul was the only side that presented him with a written contract.

A product of Manchester United’s academy, Jesse Lingard spent his early career on loans with lower-league clubs before receiving his debut for the first team during the 2014–15 season. Since then, he has made 232 appearances with United in all competitions, scoring 35 goals and helping the club win FA Cup and Europa League trophies. Lingard left the club for good ahead of the 2022-23 season, signing a one-year deal with Forest.

Lingard has also played for England’s national team, making his debut in 2016. He received his last call-up in 2021 and has a total of 32 senior team appearances in which he scored six goals.