Marko Arnautovic is headed to West Ham from Stoke in a transfer worth a reported £24 million. Arnautovic now ends his four-year stay with Stoke in which he tallied 22 goals in 125 matches.
West Ham have signed the Austrian international after having two initial bids turned down by the Potters. Arnautovic had expressed his desire to leave Stoke over the last few weeks, and some pundits have cited Stoke’s indifferent play over the last couple of years under Mark Hughes for his wanting out. Others have been critical of Stoke’s boring play that has yielded worse results than when the club was managed by Tony Pulis. Regardless of the true reason, Arnautovic now arrives in East London at club with clear ambitions.
West Ham have also signed England goalkeeper Joe Hart on loan as the team prepares to improve on its 11th place finish from last season.
Arnautovic arrived at Stoke from Germany’s Werder Bremen in 2013. Prior to playing in German, the Austrian had been on loan at Inter Milan, where he was a member of the club during their treble winning season in 2009-10 under Jose Mourinho. At the time, many compared him to Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who had been with Inter prior to Arnautovic’s arrival at San Siro. The Austrian played just three times for the Italians during his stay.
West Ham are still holding out hopes of signing Bayer Leverkusen striker Javier Hernandez, who is expected to cost in the region of £13m.
Marko Arnautovic 2016-17 key stats:
- 6 goals in 32 Premier League matches
- 5 assists in 32 Premier League matches
- 9 yellow cards in 32 Premier League matches
- 1 red card in 32 Premier League matches
- 1.9 shots per match