After the transfer saga revolving around Marko Arnautovic last January where the Austrian almost departed West Ham for China via the Telegraph, it appeared to be an episode of the past, but things have taken an unexpected turn.
As BBC Sport report, West Ham have turned down a £19.7 million bid from an unnamed Chinese club after the 30-year-old Austrian handed in a transfer request this week despite the striker signing a contract extension with the club back in January. Now, the Evening Standard have added that the east London club will only accept an offer of close to £40 million for the attacker.
Obviously, Arnautovic was the club’s top goalscorer last season as the former Stoke City star hit 11 goals in all competitions for the Hammers as Manuel Pellegrini was able to achieve a top-10 finish in the Premier League in his first season in charge of the east London side, but it could be time to sell up.
With Andy Carroll long gone after leaving the club upon the expiration of his contract and Lucas Perez also departing for a return to Spain, this summer has seen West Ham’s strikers from last season either walk through the exit door or be strongly linked with a move away. Javier Hernandez has also been reported by ESPN as a player Pellegrini is open to selling this transfer window, and perhaps the 30-year-old is someone that the club can also do with selling before the start of the new season.
Of course, the Austrian was the club’s top goalscorer last season, but with this being the second time the striker has asked for a move away from Stratford, it could be time for Pellegrini to concede defeat and allow the 30-year-old to depart this summer as he has shown that he doesn’t want to be part of the manager’s long-term plan.
Indeed, this summer has seen the Irons be linked with a number of strikers already, such as Celta Vigo star Maxi Gomez via the Daily Star and Bournemouth ace Callum Wilson via the Sun, both of whom outscored Arnautovic last season with 13 and 15 goals respectively via Transfermarkt.
Frankly, Arnautovic has shown time and time again he has no intentions of remaining at West Ham, and if Pellegrini is to improve on his first season, it should be in the best interest of the club to sell off a player who would rather not be there if a second bid comes in.
West Ham fans, what should the club do with Arnautovic this summer? Let us know!Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!