Stuart Pearce has hinted that Jesse Lingard could still join West Ham in January, claiming the Manchester United star "holds all the cards".
Lingard returned to United in June after a successful six-month loan spell at West Ham, where he scored nine goals in 16 Premier League games to help David Moyes' side qualify for the Europa League.
Moyes openly admitted that the Hammers were eager to sign the 28-year-old on a permanent deal, but they failed to do so before the summer deadline, and his assistant has suggested that the midfielder made the wrong choice over his future.
What's been said?
Pearce believes Lingard could end up making a U-turn when the transfer market reopens due to the fact his considerable talents are being wasted at Old Trafford.
"He's missed the opportunity to leave United in this transfer window," the West Ham coach has told talkSPORT.
"He can reassess his situation come January once again and decide whether there’s an opportunity to move clubs. He holds the cards, Jesse.
"The most important thing for him at the moment is his football. He's playing the odd game for United and also playing extremely well for England - and those performances for England might help him get in the United side.
"I think he’s too good a player to be sat on the outside of it not playing and he’s at an age where he needs to be playing."
What's Lingard's situation at United?
Lingard has featured in 211 games across all competitions for United since making his debut back in 2011, scoring 33 goals while also setting up another 20 for his team-mates.
However, the England international's sole appearance for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side so far this term came from the bench, and he currently finds himself behind the likes of Bruno Fernandes, Paul Pogba and Fred in the midfield pecking order.
Lingard was selected for Gareth Southgate's latest Three Lions squad despite a lack of regular minutes at club level, and scored twice in a 4-0 World Cup qualifying win over Andorra at the weekend to send a statement ahead of his return to Old Trafford.
He will hope to earn a place in Solskjaer's lineup for a home fixture against Newcastle on Sunday, but if he continues to play a bit-part role, West Ham could emerge as an attractive option again, particularly given the fact he is now less than 10 months away from the expiration of his contract.