Former Stoke City midfielder Mike Pejic says Marko Arnautovic is chasing the money by demanding a move to West Ham.
The Hammers have seen two bids of £17m and £20m for the Austrian knocked back by the Potters as they aim to keep hold of their prized asset despite the 28-year-old slapping down a transfer request.
Arnautovic has been featuring on Stoke’s pre-season tour in Switzerland while the battle for his services drag on, with reports suggesting Stoke want nearly £30m for the player.
In his regular column for our sister title, the Stoke Sentinel, Pejic spoke out about the winger and his want for a move to east London from Staffordshire.
He said: “I would be scratching my head wondering why Marko Arnautovic was so set on a move to West Ham if we weren’t all aware of the money being passed through the Premier League these days.
“The agent who secured Romelu Lukaku a move to Manchester United made a cool £10m apparently, more than he would have got from taking him to Chelsea. I wonder why he ended up at Old Trafford? It’s the same fella, Mino Raiola, who took £41m from getting Paul Pogba to Man Utd from Juventus.
“It’s big money and cuts from transfer fees as well as signing-on fees will be tempting, even if West Ham and Stoke must be offering pretty similar packages in terms of wages.
“I’m sorry West Ham fans but they just don’t offer a considerable step up than if Arnautovic stayed put. Look at the cash Everton are spending just to stay in the top seven. You’re talking more than £100m and West Ham just don’t have that kind of ambition.”