Merson believes Arnautovic is good enough to play for top clubs in the Premier League
Marko Arnautovic is good enough to play for Arsenal, Manchester United, Tottenham or Chelsea and he would waste his talent and end his career from a competitive point of view by moving to China, believes Arsenal legend, Paul Merson.
The 29-year-old Austrian has been the subject of interest from an unnamed Chinese club but West Ham have already rejected a £35 million offer and it has been reported that the Hammers are not prepared to sell their talisman who has three and a half years remaining on his contract.
Arnautovic’s brother and agent, Danijel, has made it clear that the Austrian wants a move away from east London to compete for more trophies but Pellegrini is under no pressure to sell the star man who has 8 goals and 2 assists to his name this term.
The 29-year-old started in West Ham’s 1-0 win over Arsenal last week but he has been left out of the matchday squad for the Bournemouth game this week, with reports claiming that the Austrian is not in the right frame of mind to play.
However, Merson is of the opinion that Arnautovic can take his career to a new level by playing in the top six in the Premier League.
In his weekly Daily Star column, Merson wrote: “Marko Arnautovic is too good to go to China – but maybe the money is too good to turn down.
“There must be a personal reason why he wants to go, because he still has a lot to offer and he could play for bigger teams than West Ham.
“If you were Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United or Tottenham you would take him tomorrow.
“He could play for any of those teams. He’s a really good player and he’s not just a centre-forward.
“He could play in other positions too and give you a different option.
“But you’re playing in front of fans who adore you and it’s a real kick in the teeth for them when it’s a Chinese team he’s joining and not a top European club capable of winning trophies.
“I bet he can’t name a single trophy on offer in China. For West Ham, it would be a huge loss.
“Arnautovic is a gem. Who could they replace him with? Callum Wilson is a good player who has international class movement.
“But for the price Bournemouth want, you’d expect 20 goals a season. I don’t think he gives you that.”