Manchester United star Jesse Lingard has opened up on how close he came to winning the Premier League Player of The Month for March last season before losing to eventual winner Kelechi Iheanacho.

Lingard, who was on loan at West Ham for the second half of last season, and Nigeria international, Iheanacho, were nominated for the award following their brilliant performances for their respective clubs.

The United forward scored two goals and provided one assist in three Premier League games during the month under review, while Iheanacho scored five goals, including a hat-trick in Leicester City’s 5-0 demolition of Sheffield United in March.

The Foxes No.14 would eventually go on to win the award to become the fourth Nigerian player to win the award after Austin Okocha, Osaze Odemwingie and Odion Ighalo.

In his post for The Players Tribune, the England international felt he was close to winning the award but admitted that Iheanacho was a worthy winner.

“I say everything … we had to add Premier League Player of the Month and Goal of the Month.

“When I first got nominated for Player of the Month in February, we were like, “What’s this then?! Err, add it to the board!”

“Then it became three nominations in a row, February, March, April! I’d been on the shortlist before in my career, but had never won.

“I felt really close in March, but Kelechi Iheanacho bagged a hat trick and snuck it … probably deserved it, to be fair.”

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Lingard would go on to win the award the following month.

He added, “By April, I had forgotten about it (honestly). Then the media guy at West Ham sent me a voice note, and he’s like, “You’ve won Player … and Goal of the Month.”

I rang Lou straight away. It didn’t sink in until I told my family and I heard how emotional they were. Then I was like, Wow, this is big”

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