Chinese club Shanghai SIPG has offered 35 million euros for the Hammers striker, and have reportedly now upped their bid to 45 million after West Ham refused their previous offer.
Marko Arnautovic has been absolutely clinical during his time in a West Ham uniform, scoring seven goals this term in 16 appearances while netting 11 times last season as the Hammers made an impressive climb up the table.
But as of late, he has been unhappy with the East Londoners and is keen on a move out of England. Chinese champions Shanghai SIPG have offered a hefty amount for the Austrian, a deal that would see him get paid around 300,000 euros a week. West Ham obviously doesn’t want to let their center forward go who has been such a vital part of their attack since coming over from Stoke City in 2017.
But his brother, who is also his agent, has voiced that Arnautovic wants to leave the club. When he came off against Arsenal over the weekend, it even looked like he was waving goodbye to the fans at London stadium, making it seem like a foregone conclusion that he is planning his exit.
Caliber will be different
Arnautovic will be settling for a substantially lower level of football if he decided to go and play in China. There have been some big names that have made the move to the Chinese super league like Andres Iniesta and Lukas Podolski, but they both went towards the end of their careers. The Premier League is still one of the top leagues in the world.
He currently gets paid 5.2 million euros annually, which calculates to 100,000 euros a week. Shanghai is offering him three times that amount, so I could understand why he wants to complete the transfer. But money shouldn’t be everything. He is just 29 years old, and should still have the desire to play top football at the highest level in one of the best leagues in the world. He is still making tons of money with West Ham. Arnautovic is just being greedy at this point.
Frankly, he has no reason to be unhappy with Manuel Pelligrini’s side. He is their main man up front and gets all the opportunities to shine on the pitch. He is a world-class striker no doubt, but his desire to want so much money is a little much.
West Ham may not let him go
The Hammers have valued Arnautovic at over 50 million euros, a cost that the Chinese club has yet to offer. They are making it clear they do not want to part ways with their frontman who has been so vital to the club. It will be tough to find another quality striker like the Austrian if he does leave. West Ham have said they will go after Bournemouth’s Callum Wilson is Arnautovic departs, but Eddie Howe says Wilson is not for sale as he’s been arguably the most instrumental player on the Cherries this season.
Arnautovic is making a mistake in wanting to leave West Ham. Money shouldn’t be the main focus. He gets paid more than enough. He should be driven and motivated to better himself as a footballer instead of looking for a bigger paycheck.
If a big name club in Europe wants him in the future, then absolutely go for it. But putting yourself off the map of European football and going to play in China is not the answer for Arnautovic.