"No, I’ve not really taken a hard and fast policy on that," he explained. "I’ve got to look at what the players’ potential are and there will be some spells where they are back with the club and not getting first-team football.
"I think most of the players like the fact they’re playing first-team football with something resting on the game every Saturday. Understandably, each individual club will look at the player and put them in their own first team when they feel is right or loan them when they think it’s the right time. We are there to support that development process really.
"Michael has been excellent for us," he continued. "He is great to work with – as are all of the United boys, I have to say. He wants to learn and wants to listen. He’s been excellent in the matches we have had so far and kept his place on merit.
"He is very comfortable on the ball and you can see him looking more comfortable each time we are together. The key now for Michael and the rest of the team is how we cope when under pressure. Obviously, we’ve not had huge defensive challenges of yet with the opposition we have faced but that will come and be a part of the development for them."
In terms of attacking talent, Lingard is coming into the game on the back of a promising debut for Brighton & Hove Albion at the weekend after sealing a second temporary move of the season.
"Jesse is somebody who I think has looked more comfortable in the environment every time he has come to us," stated Southgate. "He had a very good spell at Birmingham, I thought, earlier in the season.