John Hartson has given his verdict on West Ham United’s sale of Marko Arnautovic this summer, stating that he feels sorry for the Hammers who he feels did everything to keep the Austrian at the club.
West Ham confirmed on their official website on Monday morning that 30-year-old Arnautovic has left the London Stadium to join Chinese Super League outfit Shanghai SIPG.
Arnautovic came within a whisker of joining the top-flight side in January, but instead made a dramatic u-turn and signed a big-money contract to remain with the Hammers. But a disappointing six months followed.
Now, Arnautovic has opted to leave the club this summer, with the Evening Standard claiming that the Hammers are to receive a fee of around £23.3million for his services. Ex-West Ham striker Hartson reacted on Twitter.
I feel for West Ham as they went over and above to keep M.A happy.. new improved contract almost doubling his wages.. the player and agents now have more power than ever before to instigate way of moving players on.. used to be clubs now it’s changed dramatically.. #playerpower
— John Hartson (@JohnHartson10) July 8, 2019
TBR’s view – Hartson right, Arnautovic’s own interests at heart
Arnautovic has acted poorly throughout the entire saga, with West Ham fans begging for him to stay. Not only did he betray them in January, but he has now betrayed them a second time.
Time after time the former Stoke City ace has reassured fans that the London Stadium is his home, kissing the badge and describing his connection with the supporters. But in this case, it was his own personal interests at heart.
The Hammers did all they could, and very much like the case of Dimitri Payet, they have chosen to offload him instead of let another ego become bigger than the club.