Jesse Lingard has revealed his plans to make a major career change after hanging up his boots as a footballer.
The Nottingham Forest midfielder and former Manchester United ace has said he dreams of becoming an actor, but not before ending his playing career in Major League Soccer in the United States.
Lingard turns 31 later this year, and it appears his thoughts have moved onto what he’ll do after his football career comes to an end.
The creative ace spent the majority of his senior career at boyhood club Man United before leaving Old Trafford to join Nottingham Forest last summer.
He only signed a one-year contract at the City Ground, though, meaning that – if Forest don’t offer him an extension to his stay – he will have another big decision to make over the next step of his career at the end of the season.
The England international recently opened up on his goals for the future, and hopes of sealing an MLS move, on the Diary of a CEO podcast.
Most footballers use their time towards the end of their careers to complete their coaching badges, setting themselves up to remain in the sport as a team coach and maybe then a manager.
But Lingard plans to take a very different approach, and has stunned his fans by admitting he dreams to forge a career in the movie and TV business.
Although, he admits he may need acting lessons first before he can work with his favourite director – blockbuster hit-maker Christopher Nolan.
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“After football I want to get into acting,” Lingard said.
“I just love films. I’ve always been a big film lover. To be involved in a film or a series would be amazing.
“I need to really home in on the drama side of things… I need to take drama classes — I’ve not done that yet.
“And I’m really bad with lines to be honest!”
He always knows what roles he’ll be eyeing first, though, adding: “I think I’ll start in comedy.
“But maybe I can really start with some voiceover work in animation, that kind of thing.
“And then when you see films like Interstellar and Inception, those kind of roles.
“But that’s going to take time, you’re not going to be thrown in straight away, maybe a bit-part role here and there to begin with.”
Lingard is already set up pretty well, financially, for his post-football career.
As well as the millions he has earned on the pitch, Lingard has his own fashion brand, media company and has made a series of other investments – including an ESports team.
And it’s when asked about his future when he let slip of his desire to take his playing career to the States, before setting up a base in LA to begins his acting career.
“Off the pitch I’ve always been on the go,” he added.
“I always want to know what the next thing to do is, what’s the next investment, what can I be involved in, what can I do?
“I’ve got an ESports team, I love gaming, I’ve got my own brand, I love fashion, I’ve got a media company called One Touch Entertainment.
“I just want to be happy and do things I want to do to make me happy.
“The investment and business side of things, of course I want to set things up for my little sister and little brother, for my daughter when she grows up, things they can go into straight away.
“The media company is based in LA and that’s where eventually I want to finish football. Finish in America? Yeah, I think so.”